Mason Cos. has implemented organizational changes that included laying off 21 employees, including 19 in Chippewa Falls.
Trimming positions is a step company officials take very seriously but felt was a necessary response to a shift in market dynamics, Jay Berlin, Mason’s president and CEO, said Wednesday.
“This was indeed a difficult move for all involved, yet a responsible move made to strengthen the foundations of our business,” the Chippewa Falls-based nationwide direct retailer said in a statement.
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Changing market conditions prompted teams throughout the company to work to identify new sales growth initiatives, cost efficiencies and ways to improve margins, and the layoffs were part of those business improvement efforts, the company said.
“As Mason Companies has done throughout its 115-year history, we will continue to responsibly embrace change, invest in growth foundations, support organizational development and reward strong performance,” the company said in the statement. “It is the talent and commitments of our teams throughout the company that make this company great.”
Mason’s website indicates the company has more than 750 employees and answers 3.9 million calls and mails 115 million catalogs annually.
The family-owned company was founded in 1904 as a work boot manufacturer but stopped making shoes in 2003. It now owns 10 businesses that sell everything from shoes and apparel to bedding and electronics through e-commerce websites and direct mail catalogs.