2010: A Year of Big Layoffs for Big Pharma
Thursday, October 21, 2010 at 12:00:00 AM
According to the newly released Job-Cut Announcement Report from outplacement consultancy firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, pharma has cut more than 6,000 jobs in September alone, and more than 43,000 so far this year.
Which companies have contributed to this staggering number, and what are the underlying causes of job losses in the industry?
Most recently, Sanofi-Aventis announced its plans to eliminate 1,700 jobs in its US pharma business—about 25 percent of the company’s US pharma workers. The majority of jobs lost will be sales positions, and a small number of administrative jobs will disappear as well.
Before that, in September, Roche announced its “Operational Excellence Initiative,” which—while partly intended to analyze and restructure different segments of the company to maximize productivity and ROI—ultimately amounted to job cuts in an effort to “set the right priorities to ensure a successful future,” according to a statement released by Roche.
In May, Pfizer announced 6,000 layoffs that it said was part of “manufacturing reorganization” following its 2009 Wyeth acquisition. Possibly part of its plan to remain on track for its targeted cost reduction of $4 to $5 billion by the end of 2012, Pfizer has gone from nearly 114,000 employees internationally in Q 1 2010 to around 33,000 as of May of this year, according to a story on DailyFinance.com.
Following its 2009 acquisition of Schering-Plough, Merck began making cuts in February. The post-merger cuts would be a way to “eliminate some of the duplication,” according to a statement made in January by Merck CEO Dick Clark. “We have taken the best from both companies, from a process standpoint and a people standpo...
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