San Diego Business Journal

Pratt & Whitney Closing Its AeroPower Unit, Staff Cuts Expected in 2015

By Mike Allen Friday, May 16, 2014

Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies Corp., said it’s closing its San Diego-based AeroPower unit over the next two years, eliminating 530 jobs here.

A realignment of Pratt & Whitney has been in the works for some time, and the company announced the decision Thursday.

“At this time we don’t expect staff reductions to begin until sometime in 2015,” said UTC spokesman Ray Hernandez.

The Kearny Mesa plant that has been operating since 1980, and was formerly owned by Hamilton Sunstrand, makes auxiliary power systems for jets to supply power while on the ground and the backup power for in-flght systems.

In a prepared statement, Pratt & Whitney said while it was a difficult decision to make, was “necessary to maintain our competiveness in the market, further leverage Pratt & Whitney’s network and best position the company for the future.”

AeroPower’s military operations will move to Pratt & Whitney’s military engines organization, while its commercial operations will be merged into its small engine business at Pratt & Whitney, Canada, the statement said.

Under consideration to receive the military business are sites in Florida, Georgia and Texas. Most of the commercial work will be moved to Pratt & Whitney’s plant in Rzeszow, Poland.

Employees who don’t accompany Pratt & Whitney’s transition plans are eligible for a severance benefits packages including outplacement services upon their layoff, the company said.

Connecticut based UTC, which also operates an aerostructures division with a plant in Chula Vista, had revenue last year of $62.6 billion, up 9 percent from the prior year.