A recent order cancellation was a factor, the company said
The UK's largest independent coach-building firm, Wrightbus, has announced plans to make 235 staff redundant.
The Ballymena-based company, which employs 1,000 people, said a 90-day consultation process had begun.
"We will be actively working with union and employee representatives to explore ways in which we can reduce the number of job losses," a spokesperson said.
He said the sudden cancellation of a substantial order from one of its largest customers was a factor.
"By acting now, we hope that the company will be able to weather the current economic downturn and emerge stronger for the future," he said.
DUP assembly member Ian Paisley Jnr said the job losses would be "a devastating blow to not just the North Antrim economy but the Northern Ireland economy as well".
"Whilst there is little that can be done to regain cancelled contracts, I would call on the government to make whatever expertise it has available to the company and these workers," he said.
SDLP North Antrim assembly member Declan O'Loan said: "The loss of skilled, well-paid jobs will be a crisis for those families when there are not many alternative jobs around.
"Unfortunately, companies have to react to the state of their order books, and the recession is hitting every sector."
Local reaction to the job losses at the factory