June 5, 2002 — Waukesha Electric Systems (WES) has announced plans to consolidate power transformer production into plants in Wisconsin and North Carolina, closing its facility in Milpitas, CA, and transferring large power production to its Waukesha, WI, operations.
The Milpitas plant has recently focused on large power transformers used primarily in electric power generation stations. The generation market has been hit hard by recent turmoil within the energy industry, as well as by the influx of imports.
“The market for medium power transformers used in transmission and distribution substations, while soft, remains positive. However, the large power segment, which is closely tied to new power generation construction, is severely depressed and is expected to remain so into the foreseeable future,” said Nancy Dickman, President & CEO for Waukesha Electric Systems. “This makes it impractical for us to continue to operate the Milpitas plant.”
The company said all existing Milpitas plant orders will be produced and shipped before the end of the year as part of an orderly plant consolidation. The majority of the Milpitas plant product offering will then be transferred to the Wisconsin plant, and the company will suspend production of the very large transformer sizes that face the most severe market pressures.
WES will continue to manufacture generator step-up units (GSUs) through 150 MVA and auto-transformers through 300 MVA.
According to Myron Bechtel, Senior Vice President, Transformers & Equipment, “The Milpitas operation, formerly called North American Transformer, was acquired by Waukesha Electric Systems in 1999 from Rockwell International and has been an excellent investment.
“Though the plant itself can no longer be supported based on market conditions, the large power expertise gained through the acquisition will remain within Waukesha Electric Systems and will be utilized to support the transfer of the product offering to the Wisconsin plant.”
Waukesha Electric Systems, Inc., is the largest manufacturer of power transformers in the United States and is a producer of compact modular substations and engineered substation packages. The company has operations in Waukesha, WI; Goldsboro, NC; Milpitas, CA; Canton, OH; and Dallas, TX along with Service Centers in seven states. Markets served include public power, investor owned utilities, merchant power providers, and industrial/commercial firms.
Waukesha Electric Systems is a unit of SPX Corporation, a global provider of technical products and systems, industrial products and services, flow technology and service solutions.