Pfizer will close six R&D facilities in the US and the UK, reducing its global capacity by over a third following completion of its acquisition of Wyeth.
Late yesterday the US drug giant said that units in Princeton, New Jersey; Rouses Point and Plattsburgh, New York; Sanford and Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, as well as two in Gosport and Slough in the UK, would cease operations.
The firm told Reuters that: “These changes are expected to bolster productivity and reduce costs, they will result in staff reductions."
Pfizer did not specify how many employees the move would affect, However when the multi-billion dollar Wyeth acquisition was completed earlier this month the firm said that as many as 20,000 of the combined 130,000-strong workforce would be cut.
Drug, biologics and vaccine R&D will be focused at five main sites: Cambridge, Massachusetts; Groton, Connecticut; Pearl River, New York; La Jolla, California; and Sandwich in the UK.
Other facilities in San Francisco, Cambridge, UK and Shanghai, China will conduct the development of monoclonal antibodies in a move that biopharmaceutical R&D head Mikael Dolston said would transform the firm into the world's leading biopharma manufacturer.
“This new structure puts Pfizer in the best position to conduct cutting-edge research within and beyond our own laboratories and to deliver a portfolio of high-impact medicines to patients.”
Martin Mackay, president of PharmaTherapeutics R&D, agreed with the advantages of the new set-up, explaining that: “In less than a month, we have made complex business decisions needed to combine these two R&D organizations thoughtfully yet quickly.”
“Moving forward on our aggressive timeline, we are analyzing the combined portfolio and prioritizing research projects that will address unmet medical need and bring Pfizer’s scientific and competitive advantage to the benefit of patients.”