United Biscuits, the UK biscuit and snack group, has warned that it will simply close its Fontaneda subsidiary in Spain if an agreement cannot be reached with workers, unions and the local authorities about transferring employees to other group facilities.
The UK group has given the other parties until 15 October to agree to the relocations or face forced transfers to other UB sites. If the employees fail to agree to these relocations, they will be made redundant, according to a report in the Cinco Dias newspaper.
The high profile falling out over the relocations have taken their toll on the image of the Fontaneda brand as well. UB said it will have to increase its marketing expenditure in order to restore the image and erase the memories of the spat.
Despite the arguments, UB has stood firmly behind its decision to restructure its Spanish operations, including the closure of Fontaneda, but that it had been hijacked by politicians and trade unions trying to make capital in a busy local election year.
"We have been persecuted and chastised for taking the everyday business decisions which every modern company has to take," the company told the paper. "We cannot understand why we have been persecuted in this way over our plans to relocate the 208 workers at Fontaneda."