AZ cuts 400 US jobs


AstraZeneca will cut 400 US-based jobs as part of the company’s strategy to operate more effectively and efficiently.

Around 70 positions will be eliminated from existing vacancies with the remaining posts coming from the company’s Wilmington headquarters and certain field-based, non-sales roles.

Rich Fante, President, AstraZeneca US and CEO, North America, says the job cuts are “necessary to build a leaner, more efficient organisation”.

The company cites pricing pressures and the growth of generic medicines in a “challenging environment” which have resulted in the need for staff cutbacks.

AZ’s blockbuster Seroquel will face generic competition in early 2012 – although the long-acting XR version may keep its patent protection for longer than was first expected. Crestor, the company’s bestselling drug, also faces generic and low-cost rivals when it loses exclusivity in November.

Employees have now been given the opportunity to put themselves forward for voluntary redundancy. AZ says that all decision on which posts are to be axed will be finalised in early December.