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Leather business forced to lay off employees after RV maker closes
A local leather business says it was forced to lay off its employees after Erwin Hymer Group North America went into receivership.
The RVs were well-regarded for being luxury vehicles, and KW Leather Products provided more than 300 items for the company.
Zaid Samid, the owner of the business, says that he had to lay off all of his employees as a result of the company’s receivership.
“What is bothering me the most is that the people that worked for me for 20 or 25 years, there are no jobs now. I cannot do anything, I cannot do too much for them,” he says.
According to the creditor list for Erwin Hymer Group North America, Samid’s company is owed $1.2 million, one of 950 creditors who are owed at least $273 million.
More than 150 of these creditors are local companies.
Also listed are outstanding employee and warranty claims. Filings show that the company had $7.7 million in pension assets at the time of the receivership.
The company was under financial scrutiny for so-called ‘irregularities’ before it went into receivership.
“The irregularities could include ill-treating, to be polite, the pension holders,” explains Al Rosen, a forensic accountant out of Toronto.
That means that pensioners with their defined contribution plans could get pennies on the dollar.
Information sessions for laid off employees of Erwin Hymer Group North America start Thursday. They will also have access to a job fair.
So far, nothing has been organized specifically for laid off suppliers.