SNE Enterprises Closure

January 1, 2008

SNE Enterprises, which manufactures Crestline and Vetter windows and doors and is part of the Peachtree Cos., will close its Huntington, W. Va., plant, permanently laying off 130 employees. The layoffs will begin in mid-March and continue through mid-May, when the facility will be permanently closed.

The Peachtree Cos. is owned by the Schield family of Medford, Wis.; owners of Weather Shield Windows & Doors. The Peachtree operations, which include Peachtree Door & Window and SNE Enterprises, were acquired from Nortek Inc. in 2001.

Late last year, Peachtree announced the closing of its Georgia plant, citing the downturn in the housing market. Door production at that facility is being moved to one of Weather Shield’s plants in Wisconsin. SNE continues to operate a manufacturing plant in Mosinee, Wis.

Workers were informed of the closing via letters sent to each of them from SNE Vice President Kevin Schield, who also visited the plant last week to personally convey the news, according to a local newspaper report.

“Schield told us it was because the building of houses is down, and there wasn't enough work,” worker Greta Withrow told the paper.

Still, Withrow and other employees who are losing their jobs wonder if the 2004 formation of a workers’ union may have contributed to the corporate decision.

Withrow, who is on the union committee, told the paper that the company had been in a legal battle with employees over the decision, but a late 2007 court ruling had upheld the three-year-old vote for workers at the plant to join the United Steelworkers of America.