Ravenna Aluminum Inc. has given notice it will shut down by the end of the year, ending 461 jobs, as executives try to sell the company.
If the sale is not completed this year, the company and its two plants will close because of economic hardship, Ravenna Aluminum said in a letter to government officials. The plants are located in Ravenna, Ohio; and Rootstown Township, Ohio.
''The reasons for the closure and layoff are a proposed asset sale of Ravenna Aluminum,'' the company wrote to state and local officials.
''It's our objective to reach a sale by that date,'' said Ravenna Aluminum attorney Bob Deacon. ''If we can't complete a sale by (Dec. 31), we will close the two plants.''
Ravenna Mayor Kevin Poland said he hopes the plant won't actually close, with the loss of all jobs. He said he is talking with economic development people about options, including retaining the present ownership or finding a buyer.
Poland said the company had not indicated to him previously that it was having financial difficulties.
The mayor said executives have not given him details about company issues other than that their specialized products — aluminum castings — are tied to the U.S. auto industry, particularly Ford Motor Co.
Ford and other U.S. automakers have been struggling financially.
''I think that's really the crux of the problem,'' Poland said.
The pending shutdown of Ravenna Aluminum does not affect related companies Ohio Aluminum Inc. or Production Pattern Co., according to Deacon.
Ravenna Aluminum is a unit of Foundry Systems International, which is a privately held group of corporations based in Ravenna. The company's Web site says the FSI Group generates about $80 million in annual sales.