Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) is reportedly eliminating 900 employees from its Aviation Group.

The decision has been taken by the company’s board of directors, Israel’s Globes media reported citing a source.

With a workforce of 5,000 people, The Aviation Group produces, assembles and offers after-sales support for executive jets. It also develops parts for aircraft and provides maintenance services.

The layoffs come as the group ended the 2019 fiscal year with zero profits. It also built $600m in losses during the last ten years.

The group feels that it cannot endure losses further amid the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, the media reported.

In a separate development, IAI CEO Nimrod Sheffer has announced that he is stepping down after taking up the role just two years ago.

Sheffer initially joined IAI as strategic planning VP and has introduced a series of reforms and transformations during his tenure as CEO.

The growth strategy and business plan helped to position IAI to produce positive business results in the last six quarters.

Sheffer said: “IAI employees are the spearhead of the Israeli industry, the crème de la crème.”

Last month, IAI secured a contract with DHL International to convert additional Passenger Aircraft to the Cargo Aircraft Configuration.

Valued at tens of millions of dollars, the deal comes as demand for cargo aircraft is increasing due to the Covid-19 pandemic.