Jobs cut in Newton, Conover

A sportswear company will eliminate about 70 jobs in Newton and Conover by the end of the year as it shifts operations to other cities.

Canada-based Gildan Activewear Inc., purchased sock-maker GoldToeMoretz in April. GoldToeMoretz employs about 300 people in Newton, where the brand is based, and Conover.

"As part of integration of the companies, we're continuing to look at operations," said Chuck Ward, vice president of integration for Gildan. "We currently operate in multiple distribution centers, one in Newton, one in Conover, a facility in Mebane and a facility in Charleston, S.C."

Gildan will cut 66 jobs in Newton and Conover as the company consolidates its distribution centers into facilities in Mebane and Charleston. The Newton and Conover distribution facilities will close Dec. 31, Ward said.

Gildan will also eliminate 12 customer service jobs in Newton and High Point, Ward said. The company will base its customer service department at a retail headquarters in Charleston.

Gildan notified affected employees of the changes Sept. 1.

"We're working with local groups to help those employees with their job placement needs," Ward said. "We have asked their interest in any other openings that happen to be available in any other facilities, as well as the wholesale division that operates a distribution facility in Eden."

Ward said Gildan continues to evaluate its organizational structure, and jobs may open at other facilities in the future.