As Roanoke layoffs begin, FreightCar America announces joint venture with Mexican company

Roanoke layoffs expected to start around Sept. 20

ROANOKE, Va. – After announcing in July that it would permanently close its doors in Roanoke in the fall, FreightCar America is making another big move.

The company announced Thursday a joint venture with a Mexican company to manufacture railcars in Castaños, Mexico.

As 10 News reported back in July, as the Roanoke facility is closing, the layoffs would come in waves, starting around Sept. 20 and going until about Nov. 11.

FreightCar America announced a new venture with Fabricaciones y Servicios de Mexico, or Fasemex, a Mexican-based company with operations in both Mexico and the U.S.

A new factory in Castaños is under construction and expected to start producing railcars in 2020, according to FreightCar America.

The company said that once the new Mexican factory is open, it will have "substantially repositioned its manufacturing footprint" to include that new factory and its existing factory in the Shoals region of Alabama.

In a statement, the company said, " While we complete construction of this new facility, we remain deeply committed to Shoals as our primary manufacturing platform and will continue with our plans to make incremental investments and consolidate our Roanoke operation into Shoals.”

FreightCar and Fasemex will share profits and losses of the joint venture 50/50. In addition, FreightCar said they will consolidate and control the entity.

FreightCar said it's committing $25 million to the joint venture over the next several years through a combination of assets and cash.


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