Up to 140 workers at Adelaide auto component manufacturer SMR Automotive will lose their jobs as the company restructures in anticipation of Holden’s exit from the local manufacturing industry in 2017.

The job losses – 30 full-time and 110 contractors – account for a quarter of SMRA’s 560-strong workforce. The cuts will take effect in March and were also influenced by the completion of a contract to manufacture mirrors for Ford in the USA.

SMRA general manager, John Scott, says the company will switch its focus from large-scale, conventional products to lower-volume niche products, with an emphasis on new technology and innovation.

“While any reduction in the number of roles at the site is regrettable, the reality is the decision is unavoidable and has been openly communicated to our staff and contractors,” he said.

“As a company we must evolve or cease to exist. It’s as simple as that.”

The restructure will allow SMRA to remain viable. The company currently manufactures exterior mirrors, lighting products and interior components for the automotive industry but will attempt to diversify by pursuing opportunities in non-automotive markets, largely medical at this point.

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