Burton announced Tuesday that it will shift premium snowboard production from its small, Vermont-based Burton Manufacturing Center (BMC) to Austria, where the company has been building snowboards for over 25 years. Product design and development will still be home-grown in Vermont, where the company will relocate its snowboard prototyping resources from BMC into a new, purely R&D-driven prototype facility at its global headquarters in Burlington. Burton said 43 jobs will be lost, leaving 377 in Vermont and 900 worldwide.BMC, located in South Burlington, Vermont is slated to close in June of this year. Burton’s premium factory in Austria already has the high-end technology and capacity to increase its production. Forty-three employees will be affected by BMC’s closure, and Burton is working closely with the Vermont Department of Labor’s Rapid Response program to assist these employees with unemployment and re-employment resources. “When I started Burton Snowboards in 1977, all we did was make snowboards in Vermont,” says Jake Burton Carpenter, Founder and Chairman, Burton Snowboards. “Thanks to the BMC staff, we’ve excelled at prototyping and developing product in Vermont, which is why all four Burton Olympic halfpipe medals were won on snowboards coming out of our local factory. But simply put, it costs us significantly more to produce a board in Vermont than we are capable of selling it for, and sadly, this is not sustainable in the current economy.”Carpenter started the company in Londonderry after seeing someone riding a homemade board.Carpenter cited several factors for closing the South Burlington facility in a Burlington Free Press story, including labor, real estate, utility and health care benefits. The cost is significantly less in Austria, he said.The relocated BMC R&D facility will continue to turn riders’ ideas into the most advanced prototypes on snow, with the added benefit of having all prototyping resources under one roof at Burton’s global headquarters, Burton said in a statement.”Our biggest priority at Burton is to make the best product for snowboarders, and we do that by listening to riders and investing more in research and development than anyone in our industry,” says Burton CEO Laurent Potdevin. “It makes the most economic sense to produce all of our high-end snowboards in Austria. Here in Vermont, we will continue to focus on advanced product development, which will allow us to bring the latest snowboard technology to riders faster than ever before.”Burton is the world’s leading snowboard company and owns other top boardsports brands, including Channel Islands Surfboards, DNA Distribution (Alien Workshop and Habitat Skateboards), The Program (Forum, Special Blend and FOURSQUARE) Analog, Gravis, ANON and R.E.D. After the BMC manufacturing changes, Burton and its family of brands will employ over 900 people worldwide.Source: Burton. 3.16.2010
After back-to-back home victories over Norwich and Chelsea, Villa are aiming for three in a row in front of their own fans in the Barclays Premier League when Stoke are the visitors. Not since 2007 have Villa accomplished such a feat, much to Lambert’s astonishment, but now his players have the chance to end such an abysmal run. Press Association Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert will attempt to scratch a seven-year itch on Sunday and eradicate a statistic he claims is “incredible”. “It’s taken seven years of trying (to win three home league games in a row),” said Lambert. “When you think of the players this club has had, and they’ve had great teams here, been in the top six, been in Europe not that long ago, it’s been a long, long time. “Seven years – the fact they’ve still not done it is incredible. It is a long time for this club not to have done that. “We’re not talking about three or four months, we’re talking years, and that’s too long for that to happen for a club of this size.” Villa’s shock victory over league leaders Chelsea has raised belief, with Lambert adding: “I guarantee everybody, to a man, thought Chelsea would win. “I don’t think anybody would have thought we would have a chance of winning three successive home league games. “Now we’ve an opportunity to do it and get rid of that seven-year thing.” The wins have elevated Villa up to 10th, nine points clear of the relegation zone and on the cusp of safety after three successive seasons of battling against relegation. Whilst Lambert believes fewer than the usual 40 points will be needed this year to clinch another season in the top flight, he does not want to take anything for granted. “I think it (the points tally for safety) will be lower than people think it’s going to be, because of the way the table is and the way things have gone,” said Lambert. “I’m not sure what will be needed, but it’s better to be safe than sorry and simply try to win as many games as you can.” With the exception of long-term injury victims Libor Kozak, Charles N’Zogbia and Jose Okore, Lambert has a full squad to choose from. Left-back Ryan Bertrand is available again after being ineligible for the game against parent club Chelsea, whilst midfielder Karim El Ahmadi is fit after picking up a shin injury in that game following a shocking tackle from Ramires that led to the Brazilian being given a straight red card.
Chelsea have sidelined team doctor Eva Carneiro from match-day duties after she fell foul of manager Jose Mourinho, according to British media reports on Tuesday.Mourinho criticised Carneiro after she ran on the pitch to treat Eden Hazard in stoppage time of Chelsea’s 2-2 draw at home to Swansea City on Saturday, saying she did not “understand the game”.After receiving support from fans, Carneiro wrote on her Facebook page: “I would like to thank the general public for their overwhelming support. Really very much appreciated.”The Daily Telegraph and Daily Mail said that while Carneiro would continue in her role as first-team doctor, she would no longer attend games or training sessions or enter the team hotel.Mourinho felt that Carneiro had been wrong to go to Hazard’s aid as his side pushed for a winner against Swansea at Stamford Bridge.”I wasn’t happy with my medical staff because even if you are a medical doctor or secretary on the bench, you have to understand the game,” he told reporters after the match. “If you go to the pitch to assist a player, then you must be sure that a player has a serious problem. I was sure that Eden didn’t have a serious problem. He had a knock and was very tired.”My medical department left me with eight fit outfield players in a counter-attack after a set-piece and we were worried we didn’t have enough players left.”Carneiro joined Chelsea in February 2009 and was promoted to the role of first-team doctor and assistant medical director by Andre Villas-Boas, one of Mourinho’s predecessors, in 2011.The Telegraph and the Mail said her role had been changed as part of a shake-up of back-room staff by Mourinho.– Follow Joy Sports on Twitter: @Joy997FM. Our hashtag is #JoySports