R.R. Donnelley to Shutter Des Moines Facility

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R.R. Donnelley & Sons Co. will shutter its printing plant in Des Moines, IA, by July 1, 2002.


The closing will be gradual and eventually will eliminate 775 jobs, according to a prepared statement released by the firm Monday.


The Des Moines plant, acquired in 1990, produces various magazines still under contract, as well as catalogs and newspaper inserts. Production will be transitioned to the printer's 40 other plants, but no definite decisions have been made.


The company said the decision was based on three factors: the plant's size and scale; the age and quality of the printing equipment; and the plant's accessibility to major population centers.


The Des Moines closing was not completely unexpected, as R.R. Donnelley warned on March 30 of the possible development. The closing follows the printer's shutdown of operations in St. Petersburg, FL; South Daytona, FL; and Houston during the past three months.


In addition, R.R. Donnelley last week reported $14.5 million in net profits for the first quarter, down from $46.7 million in profits for the same period last year.


The Chicago-based printer saw business in its financial services division dip by 24.4 percent, the worst performance of any of its business areas. Its book publishing fell 10 percent, while catalog and magazine publishing dropped by almost 2 percent.


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