Amidst strike, Vought promises 80% shipment rate

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A Vought Aircraft executive today pledged to complete in the fourth quarter more than 80% of its scheduled shipments despite an ongoing labour strike at a key facility.

The structures firm has hired a temporary workforce at its Nashville, Tennessee, plant, to replace about nine-tenths of the workers on strike since late-September. The temporary staff in Nashville are now approaching pre-strike operating performance, says Vought CEO Elmer Doty.

Vought plans to meet later this week with a mediator and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) to resolve the nearly six-week old strike.

"We hope we can achieve a quick resolution," Doty says.

Vought's output also has been disrupted since September by another IAM strike involving Boeing's workforce in Seattle and Wichita. That strike is now over, but Boeing's suppliers are still weeks away from resuming normal operations.

Vought has temporarily shut down a bond fabrication operation at its North Charleston, South Carolina, facility, and plans to also halt work in production assembly areas.

The length of both shutdowns will be decided after Boeing decides on the latest revisions to the 787 schedule.

Vought posted third quarter improvements in both revenues and profit despite the labour problems. Net income increased by $17.7 million compared to the same period a year ago and revenue increased 13% to $477.3 million.