Ethan Allen Interiors in Danbury and Precision Resource in Shelton are among the latest businesses to announce temporary furloughs in the face of the COVID-19 crisis.
Ethan Allen is furloughing approximately 70% of its global workforce, most of whom will receive a salary reduction of up to 20% through June 30 and enrolled benefits for up to two months. Chairman, President and CEO Farooq Kathwari will forgo his salary, while senior management will take a 40% salary hit through June 30. In addition, the firm’s board of directors will reduce their cash compensation by 50% through the end of June.
Ethan Allen borrowed $80 million under its revolving credit facility on March 23, and another $20 million on March 30, bringing its cash and investments on hand to approximately $110 million as of March 31. The company said it remains committed to paying dividends over the long term and will review dividend payments in the short term. It also expects to reinstate share repurchases when it deems them appropriate.
On the operational side, the company’s design centers, which were originally planned to be closed from March 19-27, will remain shuttered through mid- to late-April, and most of its manufacturing facilities will be temporarily closed, effective immediately. Customers can schedule virtual appointments with Ethan Allen’s design consultants at ethanallen.com.
“The coronavirus crisis is unique and severe,” Kathwari said. “Never in our history, in fact in world history, has mankind been asked to stay locked up in their homes and businesses asked in mass to close down their operations.
“We take very seriously the responsibilities we have with our associates, customers and all shareholders,” he added. “Our objective is to persevere through this, get back to work, open our 200 North American design centers and restart our North American manufacturing and logistics operations.”
Meanwhile, Precision Resource’s Connecticut Division is laying off 51 employees for at least two weeks, from April 6-17, though the company cautioned that the furloughs could be extended.
The affected job positions and number of employees are as follows: Press Room, 8; Grinding, 8; Inspect/Pack/Ship, 11; Secondary Operations, 12; Die Maker, 5; Quality, 1; Office, 4; and Tool Room, 3.