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Transcontinental CEO François Olivier said separation packages and out-placement services will be provided to the workers who lost their jobs.Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press

Transcontinental Inc. will close two printing plants and eliminate 500 jobs as it reorganizes its operations across Canada following its takeover of Quad/Graphics Canada Inc.

The Montreal-based company said it would close two plants owned by its former competitor – one in Montreal and one in Dartmouth, NS.

Transcontinental acquired the American company's seven Canadian plants last year, in a swap for Transcontinental's Mexican operations. Transcontinental also handed over the portion of its Canadian book printing business that exported to the United States as part of the deal, which closed on March 1.

The company said Tuesday that the plants will close at the end of June, and the four remaining plants will be "integrated into the Transcontinental network in order to maximize the use of each piece of equipment across our entire print network."

The printer said it has invested almost $700-million into its print network over the past several years, and the acquisition of Quad/Graphics is expected to bring in about $230-million in new business over the next two years.

"Naturally, many scenarios were examined by the integration committee in order to keep as many employees as possible, but given the low utilization rate of the equipment in the newly acquired network, strategic decisions had to be made," Transcontinental said in a statement.

There were 6,900 employees working in the company's 33 plants prior to the announcement. Chief executive officer François Olivier said the 500 workers will receive "separation packages and out-placement services to support them in their efforts to quickly find new employment."

"Transcontinental wishes to thank all the workers at all the plants involved," Mr. Olivier said in a statement. "It is important to stress that over the years it has been the dedication, professionalism and talents of the men and women at these plants that has driven the success of their company."