Human Resources, Manufacturing, and Real Estate

Wolverine Worldwide shutting down distribution center

October 20, 2017
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Wolverine Worldwide Bates Temperate Weather Boots
Temperate weather boots by Bates, a brand of Wolverine Worldwide. Courtesy Wolverine Worldwide

Editor's note: The original version of this article incorrectly described the dump sites as illegal. 

Wolverine Worldwide is shutting down a distribution center in the area and moving 50 jobs to California.

The footwear and apparel maker informed workers at the facility in Rockford of the closure yesterday, according to a post Thursday by WOOD TV.

The Rockford-based company will assist “all affected employees in transitioning through the closure,” according to a statement by Wolverine Worldwide provided to WOOD TV.

The jobs from the existing DC-47 distribution plant at 9300 Courtland Dr. NE will be moved to a new 720,000-square-foot facility in Beaumont, California, east of Los Angeles, by the end of the first quarter of 2018.

A company spokesperson said the move has nothing to do with the discovery of toxic waste contamination from its leather operations in the 1960s, found in the Houseman neighborhood of Plainfield Township in the late spring, according to the WOOD TV post. On Tuesday, an additional dump site was discovered in Belmont, making three disposal sites found in the area.

Wolverine Worldwide said in the statement it will continue to “build upon” its “strong local foundation” despite the closure of the distribution center.

“As a global company in a highly competitive industry, we must also continually evolve to meet the shifting challenges of the market, including the most effective ways to distribute our products,” Wolverine Worldwide said.

“Earlier this year, we opened a new 720,000-square-foot distribution center in Beaumont, California that allows us to ship to our consumers faster than ever before. The decision to transition our Rockford distribution center business to the Beaumont location will allow us to better serve customers in the fast-evolving consumer and global marketplace.”

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