Boeing to shrink with Pentagon cuts

Expect to see more job cutbacks at Boeing as the company moves to match its profile to coming Pentagon spending cutbacks.

The company announced Tuesday it plans to consolidate its existing six defense operations into four and will cut executive positions in the process. Layoffs for lower level workers could come next.

The Puget Sound area may not see major cutbacks because much of Boeing’s defense business is concentrated in other sites; Missouri, Pennsylvania, Arizona, and California are chief among those.

Effective Oct. 1, Boeing’s military operations will have four new divisions: St. Louis-based global strike; Ridley Park, Pa.-based mobility; Seattle-based surveillance and engagement; and St. Charles, Mo.-based missiles and unmanned airborne systems.

The great majority of Boeing’s Western Washington employees are employed by the company’s commercial airplanes division, which has assembly plants in Everett and Renton and fabrication plants in Auburn and Frederickson.

If Boeing wins the Pentagon’s $40 billion contract to build 179 airborne tanker aircraft, defense-related spending could rise in Western Washington.