Lifestyle, News

Necco workers ponder their next step after Revere company abruptly closes

REVERE — Less than a week after more than 230 Necco employees abruptly lost their jobs, more than 50 were connected with companies trying to recruit the displaced workers.

The former employees of New England Confectionery Co. (Necco) attended a job fair at Revere City Hall Monday and were connected with a list of more than 50 potential employers, career resources, and résumé building tips. The fair was organized by Mayor Brian Arrigo and attended by Attorney General Maura Healey.

Meanwhile, two former employees have filed a class action lawsuit against the company claiming Necco failed to warn employees they would be laid off. The complaint, filed in U.S. District Court, said the shutdown was in direct violation of the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act.

According to the U.S. Dept. of Labor’s website, the act protects workers, their families, and communities by requiring employers with 100 or more employees to provide at least 60 days advance written notice of a plant closing and mass layoff affecting 50 or more employees at a single site of employment.

The complaint was filed by Dexter Main of Lynn and Francesco D’Amelio of Revere.

Necco calls itself the country’s oldest continuously operating candy company. They are best known for Necco Wafers, Mary Janes and Valentine Sweethearts.

Round Hill Investments LLC said Tuesday they are selling the company’s brands to another manufacturer and shuttering its American Legion Highway plant.

The company purchased Necco for $17.3 million at a bankruptcy auction in May.

Round Hill did not identify Necco’s new owner or say if candy production will resume. The closure came as a shock to the 230 workers at the plant, who said they were told to pick up their final paychecks Friday.

Last year, Framingham-based Atlantic Management Corp. and VMD Cos. of North Andover purchased Necco and its 55-acre headquarters for $54.5 million.

Atlantic has said it plans to find tenants that reflect the new economy.

The lease for the 830,000 square foot property, of which they use only a portion, was set to expire in August but was extended through November 30, according to court documents.

On the afternoon of July 24, employees learned they were ceasing production immediately and that their employment was terminated at the close of business. They were told to return three days later to collect their final paychecks, according to the document.

A more comprehensive job fair is being planned for mid-August with the state’s Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.

More Stories From Revere