PARIS (Reuters) -- Union leaders at a Goodyear tire plant in northern France have agreed to talks with a Texan executive who caused an uproar earlier this year by saying the factory was "not worth saving."
Titan International CEO Maurice Taylor accused the plant's workers of being lazy and its unions of being "insane" in an open letter to the French government in February.
But Industry Minister Arnaud Montebourg, who had traded barbs with Taylor, has said the executive was reconsidering his abandoned takeover bid for the plant. His latest offer, for part of the operation, would save 333 out of a total 1,200 jobs.
Taylor, known as "the Grizz" for his gruff manner, has yet to confirm the plans.
"We're in favor of talks, we're in favor of pushing things forward, but only insofar as nobody is left behind," said Mickael Wamen, head representative at Goodyear for the CGT union, which represents a majority of workers.
Taylor's offer to buy the factory's tools for manufacturing agricultural tires while abandoning its road tire division is similar to a previous offer he made, which would have preserved more jobs but was rejected by Wamen's union.