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General Time Corp. Winds Down

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ATHENS, Ga. -- General Time Corp., once the country's top maker of alarm and wall clocks under the brand names Westclox, Seth Thomas and Spartus, announced it is closing its entire operation.

The closing, announced Tuesday, puts 141 people out of work at its manufacturing plant in Athens and cuts another 30 employees at its headquarters in Norcross.

In two previous layoffs -- one in October and one in February -- General Time laid off nearly 400 people at the Athens plant, which had been in operation since 1954.

"Lending institutions no longer will provide the cash to support the ongoing business requirements," company spokesman Daniel Moreland said. "As a result we could not guarantee that salaries could be paid past today (Tuesday). Very likely we will initiate bankruptcy proceedings."

Besides the Athens factory, General Time had distribution centers in Canada, the United Kingdom and Hong Kong. Those will be closed as well.

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