In 2012, Swiss pharma firm Novartis acquired specialist dermatology firm Fougera for $1.5bn (€1.3bn) and added it to its generics offshoot business Sandoz.
The subsidiary manufactures over 200 branded and generic semi-solid creams, ointments and lotions from two manufacturing sites in Melville and Hicksville, New York state, but this week Sandoz has announced production will be consolidated to Melville.
The transfer will take four to five years and will include the construction of a new facility at the Melville site.
While Sandoz spokesperson Chris Lewis said it was too early to discuss details surrounding new technology planned at the consolidated site, he did confirm the move would not lead to a reduction in jobs.
“There are nearly 400 employees at both sites combined. At this time, we are not anticipating a headcount reduction as a result of the consolidation,” he told in-Pharmatechnologist.com.
The Hicksville site will be be divested once the sites are fully consolidated into the Melville location, Lewis added, contributing to Novartis’s ongoing effort to optimize its global manufacturing network which begun in 2010.
Since then, 25 sites in the firm’s continuing operations have been or are being restructured or divested, according to its latest annual report SEC filing.
“In 2015, we announced plans to exit Sandoz manufacturing sites in Frankfurt and Gerlingen, Germany, as well as in Turbhe, India. We also closed a Pharmaceuticals Division facility in Resende, Brazil, divested an Alcon site in Kaysersberg, France, as well as a pharmaceutical site in Taboão da Serra, Brazil, and announced the downsizing of a Pharmaceuticals Division site in Ringaskiddy, Ireland.”
As of December 31 2015, the pharma giant had 11 pharmaceutical and four bulk chemical production facilities (Schweizerhalle, Switzerland; Grimsby, UK; Ringaskiddy, Ireland and Changshu, China), as well as one biotechnology site, under the Novartis brand; 45 manufacturing sites across 19 countries operating under Sandoz, and nine surgical equipment and other surgical medical devices in its Alcon Division.