Kuehne+Nagel CEO Sees About 20,000 Job Cuts, Many Likely in the US

By Reuters

ZURICH—Freight-forwarder Kuehne+Nagel may cut more than 20,000 jobs, with warehouse workers most affected, as the economic crisis caused by the CCP virus hits shipping, controlling shareholder Klaus-Michael Kuehne said in an interview.

Kuehne+Nagel, which employs 83,000 people, will likely cut jobs in locations such as the United States that unlike some European countries does not have a system of short-time working to fall back on to prevent massive layoffs, he told Germany’s Die Welt in an article published on Saturday.

He sees globalization slowing, with a trend towards regionalization.

“The group could have 20-25 percent fewer workers than before the crisis,” he said. “We will emerge from the crisis smaller.”

The 2020 result will definitely be worse than a year ago, said Kuehne, adding nobody knows how long the crisis will last and how deep it will be. The company has already scrapped its dividend.

NTD Photo
Klaus Michael Kuehne, CEO of Kuehne+Nagel logistics, attends the Bundesliga match between Hamburger SV and Borussia Dortmund at Volksparkstadion in Hamburg, Germany, on Nov. 20, 2015. (Martin Rose/Bongarts/Getty Images)

“The moments of truth come in the April to June period,” he said. “Transport volumes have declined significantly. The decisive question is, will the world economy begin a gradual recovery in June?”

“I expect that economic production will be lower for years to come,” Kuehne told the newspaper.

NTD staff contributed to this report.