ImagePoint has closed its sign manufacturing plant in Florence, leaving some 180 people without jobs. The Knoxville-based company, which has been in business since 1944, has terminated all operations and is currently seeking buyers for various segments of the company. Approximately 270 employees at ImagePoint’s headquarters in Knoxville are affected by the shutdown.
In a press release, ImagePoint CEO Jim Martin said the nation’s economic problems had taken a significant toll on the company, which has produced, installed and maintained interior and exterior signage for major companies such as McDonald’s, Chase Bank, General Motors, Nissan, Ford, Rite Aid and Chrysler, among others.
In recent years, ImagePoint had taken steps to reduce operating costs. Last year, the company closed its manufacturing plant in Columbia, S.C., and consolidated its sign production in Florence. In the end, however, those measures weren’t enough to overcome the obstacles. “The automotive and restaurant businesses are facing serious challenges,” Martin said. “And these industries represent a major part of ImagePoint’s business.”