Baxter International Starts Hiring in Anticipation of Planned Drug Spinout Baxalta

Baxter International (BAX) Starts Hiring in Anticipation of Planned Drug Spinout Baxalta
March 2, 2015
By Mark Terry, Breaking News Staff

Illinois-based Baxter International recently announced it had already started to hire for its new Boston-based research and development center. The site is a 200,000 square-foot facility at 650 Kendall Street, a building that also in use by Aveo Pharmaceuticals.

“Some employees have already relocated and we are hiring in Cambridge,” said Brian Kyhos, a Baxter spokesman, in a statement. There is no current information about how many people Baxter has hired or how many more they will, but an earlier announcement indicated the new center would employ about 400 people.

In March 2014, Baxter announced plans to spin out two separate, independent companies. One would focus on developing and marketing biopharmaceuticals. The other company would focus on medical products. “Baxter has an established history of executing successful spinoffs, and we have continued to evaluate the separate of these two businesses in response to diverging business dynamics and the rapidly changing macro-environment,” said Robert Parkinson, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Baxter in a statement. “This decision underscores Baxter’s commitment to ensuring its long-term strategic priorities remain aligned with shareholders’ best interests, while improving our competitive position and performance, enhancing operational, commercial and scientific effectiveness and creating value for patients, healthcare providers, and other key stakeholders.”

The Medical Products company retained the Baxter International Inc. name and will be run by Parkinson. The BioScience business will be named Baxalta Incorporated. It’s pipeline is based on innovation in bleeding disorders and immunology, and will also look at niche areas of oncology and technology platforms like gene therapy. Currently the senior leader at the new Cambridge location is John Orloff, the company’s head of research and development.

There was originally some speculation that the Baxalta headquarters might also move to Cambridge. However, it recently signed a lease for a 260,000 square-foot facility in Bannockburn, Ill.

“Selecting Baxalta’s global headquarters is a key milestone on our journey to becoming a leading, independent biopharmaceutical company,” said Ludwig Hantson, president of Baxter BioScience, who would be chief executive officer of Baxalta, in a statement, “and reaffirms our commitment to Northern Illinois and our strong employee base here.”

Baxalta will have about $6 billion global revenues. It plans to trade on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol BXLT. Baxter International will continue to trade under the symbol BAX on the NYSE.

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