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Sanofi sheds jobs in R&D restructuring

New R&D chief diverting funds to new therapy areas

sanofi

Hundreds of jobs are to go at Sanofi’s research and development facilities in France and Germany.

466 jobs will be cut, with diabetes and cardiovascular R&D bearing the brunt of the restructuring at the French pharma company. The job cuts will mostly be in France, but reductions will also hit Germany.

Making job cuts isn't as easy to do in these countries as it is in the US, and the company is now entering into consultations with unions, while stressing that it plans to maintain a long-term commitment to both France and Germany.

Sanofi plans to add new headcount in France, Germany and the US in other disciplines, and will divert resources to expanding work in other therapeutic areas. The company’s cuts in diabetes reflect difficulties in finding new treatments superior to existing ones – led by its insulin analogue blockbuster Lantus, which is now in steep decline because of biosimilars in Europe and price pressures in the US.

The FDA also recently rejected its Lexicon partnered SGLT1/SGLT2 inhibitor Zynquista.

Sanofi’s restructuring of its R&D organisation is headed by John Reed, its new R&D chief, who joined from Roche last year.

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John Reed

He commented: “The transformation of our R&D organisation would enable us to focus on the therapeutic areas and platforms where we believe we have the greatest opportunity to make a meaningful difference for patients and to maximise the productivity of our research engine.”

The R&D pipeline review will allow Sanofi to re-focus its prioritised therapeutics areas. It has 84 projects in its pipeline, with oncology accounting for 26 projects. Immuno-inflammation represents 19 projects, and vaccines comes in third with 11. Out of these projects, 28 are in phase 3 trials, and seven in the registration stage.

The company has also just announced a change of CEO - Novartis pharma chief Paul Hudson will take over from Olivier Brandicourt from 1 September.

Article by
Lucy Parsons

21st June 2019

From: Regulatory

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