Johnson & Johnson's Animas to Shut Down Ops and Exit Insulin Pump Biz, 410 Jobs Affected
October 5, 2017
By Alex Keown, BioSpace.com Breaking News Staff
CHESTERBROOK, Pa. – Animas Corporation, a Johnson & Johnson division focused on diabetes care, is exiting the space and shutting down operations and laying off 410 employees.
This morning, Pennsylvania-based Animas Corporation will discontinue the manufacturing and sale of the insulin pumps it manufactures, Animas Vibe and One-Touch Ping. The two pumps are used by approximately 90,000 diabetes patients. In a statement issued this morning, Animas said patients using its products will be allowed to transition their needs to rival company Medtronic plc . Animas said it will continue to provide customer service, training and warranty support to insulin-pump customers through a transition period, although how long that period will be was not disclosed.
Johnson & Johnson announced earlier this year that it was exploring strategic options to maximize shareholder value and one of those was the possible sale of its diabetes care business. In January, J&J said it planned to seek a possible sale, joint venture or operating partnerships for LifeScan Inc., Animas and Calibra Medical Inc.. as part of a plan to spark growth. This morning, Johnson & Johnson said it will continue to evaluate potential strategic options for LifeScan, Inc. and its blood glucose monitoring OneTouch brand of products.
In its statement announcing the close of Animas, the company said the decision to shutter Animas was due to the changing needs of customers, market dynamics and increased competition. The combination of challenges made it “too difficult to sustain the insulin pump business” and the decision was made to close down Animas.
Animas is moving quickly with its decision. As of today, the company has discontinued sales of its insulin pumps in the United States and Canada. The company said it was working on discontinuing sales of its devices outside of North America. Until those global plans are in place, the company said it will continue to handle sales outside of the United States and Canada.
"We recognize that patients living with diabetes rely on our products to provide critical care, and we want to reassure them that we will be with them every step of the way throughout this transition," Valerie Asbury, general manager of Animas Corporation, said in a statement. "Our number one priority is ensuring patients have a seamless experience as they transition to Medtronic. For over 30 years, Medtronic has been a global leader in the treatment of those living with diabetes, and we are confident they will provide outstanding support to our patients and their healthcare teams."
Patients using an Animas pump or supplies will continue to receive pump support and services during the short term. The company said it will also honor pump warranties.
Animas patients in the U.S. and Canada are encouraged to talk to their health care providers to discuss options. If a Medtronic device is preferred patients can visit the website http://www.medtronicdiabetes.com/Animas to handle the transition. Patients, caregivers and healthcare providers can also visit http://www.animaspatientsupport.com for more information.
Shares of Johnson & Johnson are down slightly this morning, trading at $132.70 as of 10:12 a.m.