Alliant Techsystems Inc., Edina, Minn., will freeze its $1.6 billion defined benefit plan to new non-union employees effective Jan. 1, confirmed spokesman Bryce Hallowell. Those employees will instead enroll in an enhanced 401(k) plan. The company currently matches 100% of the first 3% of salary contributed to the 401(k) and 50% of the next 2% of salary, Mr. Hallowell said. The company will enhance that match for the employees who cannot participate in the pension plan, but Mr. Hallowell would not provide details.
The firm's 401(k) plan had roughly $1.3 billion in assets as of Dec. 31, 2004, the most recent period for which figures were available.
Separately, the company plans to contribute up to $200 million to the defined benefit plan by Dec. 15, according to an 8-K filing Wednesday. Funding will likely come from the planned sale of up to $300 million in convertible senior subordinated notes. Company officials plan to use the rest of the proceeds to buy back about 1.25 million common stock shares worth $100 million. Mr. Hallowell said company officials expect to contribute a total of $385 million by year's end.