Novartis AG Cuts 2,000 U.S. Jobs After Drug Setback

Published: Jan 17, 2012

Novartis AG plans to axe nearly 2,000 of its U.S. workforce ahead of the patent loss of top-selling blood pressure drug Diovan there and will take a $900 million charge after another of its key drugs failed to live up to expectations. Novartis is the latest in a long line of global drugmakers to cut its sales force as the industry faces its biggest wave of patent expiries ever. The Swiss drugmaker's news comes just weeks after AstraZeneca said it was slashing nearly a quarter of its U.S. sales force in a second round of job cuts in as many months, while Sanofi has also said it is cutting back on its sales force there. Novartis plans to shed 1,630 jobs in its U.S. field force and another 330 positions are expected to go as it reorganizes the headquarters of its U.S. general medicines business. The changes are expected to take place in the second quarter of this year.

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