Performance Fibers lays off 16 more workers

SALISBURY — After laying off 36 people in August, Performance Fibers in Salisbury has eliminated 16 more jobs because of declining demand for the product they make, a company official said.

The plant laid off the 16 additional full-time, hourly workers Sept. 12 and 13, according to Tony Pennington, human resources director for the Americas at Performance Fibers.

“Due to the business environment, the demand for the product has gone down from our customers,” Pennington said.

The Salisbury plant makes polyester fiber as industrial reinforcement used in a variety of products, including conveyor belts, seat belts, rope, hoses and offshore mooring. The plant does not make any of the finished products.

Pennington said the company does not believe customers are buying the product elsewhere, just buying less of it.

“In general, volume has gone down,” he said.

The second round of layoffs leaves 234 employees at the plant, which operates around the clock.

Pennington said he does not expect any additional job losses.

“That’s hard to say. Today, I will tell you we don’t anticipate any,” he said. “If business changes dramatically, that could change.”

The company has locations on several continents, but only Salisbury was affected by the layoffs.

Performance Fibers bought the plant in 2008. Before that, it was known as Invista. According to Salisbury Post files, 550 people worked at the plant at that time, not including contract employees.

Contact reporter Emily Ford at 704-797-4264.

Notice about comments: is pleased to offer readers the ability to comment on stories. We expect our readers to engage in lively, yet civil discourse. cannot promise that readers will not occasionally find offensive or inaccurate comments posted in the comments area. Responsibility for the statements posted lies with the person submitting the comment, not If you find a comment that is objectionable, please click "report abuse" and we will review it for possible removal. Please be reminded, however, that in accordance with our Terms of Use and federal law, we are under no obligation to remove any third party comments posted on our website. Full terms and conditions can be read here.

Do not post the following:

  • Potentially libelous statements or damaging innuendo.
  • Obscene, explicit, or racist language.
  • Personal attacks, insults or threats.
  • The use of another person's real name to disguise your identity.
  • Comments unrelated to the story.