Saturday, July 2, 2011

How many jobs did Binnie really create?

September 7, 2010 by ShawnMillerick  
Filed under News & Politics

Bill Binnie has made his record of creating jobs the centerpiece of his campaign. That record has been challenged lately with a series of media stories that detailed very clearly that Binnie closed a plant in California and relocated it to Mexico.

Now! Hampshire now has an exclusive report that shows that in addition to this, Binnie job creation claims are wildly exaggerated.

To start, Binnie on several occasions has claimed to have created “thousands and thousands and thousands” of jobs. Binnie claims that when he sold his company to Tyco in 1996, it had over 3,000 employees. Actually, it had 2,500 employees at the time of its sale, and 550 were in Mexico, according to his company’s own annual reports.

So how many of those did Binnie create? To start, certainly not all of the 2,500. Binnie was in the business of Leverage Buyouts. He purchased several companies and formed them into a plastics conglomerate. So the first question is, how many jobs did those companies already have when he bought them and merged them into Carlisle Plastics.

In an interview with the Union Leader, Binnie said the companies he bought had 1,200 employees. Using his own numbers, that means that Binnie created 1,300 jobs by the time he sold the company. And since 550 of those jobs were at the Mexican plant, Binnie created no more than 750 jobs in the United States. Of course, included in that 750 are the jobs that Binnie also had in his Asian branches as well, but Now! Hampshire is unable to determine exactly how many of those jobs were overseas.

So based on Binnie’s own numbers, his job creation stands at hundreds, not thousands, of jobs.

But did Binnie really buy companies with only 1,200 existing employees and not more?

Based upon Binnie’s company’s own annual reports, Now! Hampshire is able to determine the following. Carlisle Plastics was formed when Binnie bought and merged Rex Plastics and Bercon Packaging, and the company was incorporated in 1985; in 1989, the name was changed to Carlisle Plastics. In 1988, Binnie bought CDSW; CDSW already owned A&E Plastics which also contained and Asian division, A&E Far East. In 1989, Binnie merged Carlisle and CDSW.

According to public documents, by the end of 1989, Carlisle had 1,550 employees, the results of these acquisitions and mergers. By the end of 1990, a year later, the number of employees jumped to 2,600. Where did all of these jobs come from? Did Binnie really double the number of jobs at the company in only a year?

Not likely. In March of 1990 Binnie bought American Western Corporation. Many of the jobs that Carlisle showed at the end of 1990 were the result of this merger. And from 1990 until the sale of his company in 1996, Binnie actually had a net loss of 100 jobs, as it declined from 2,600 to 2,500 in that time period.

So based upon these numbers, it is likely that the number can be reduced further, likely in the low hundreds. Not that this is bad; anyone who creates even one job deserves kudos. But it is indeed a far cry from the “thousands and thousands and thousands” that Binnie has been claiming on the stump.

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