Sanofi-Aventis has confirmed that it's cutting back on sales, but no official word on just how many positions got the axe during yesterday's phone-call layoff marathon. "[A]ll I can tell you at this time is that this is an ongoing process," a spokesman wrote to BNet Pharma and Pharmalot. But on CafePharma, the consensus was that 1,200 to 1,300 sales staff positions in "general therapeutics" were cut, with up to an additional 300 reps on the specialty drug teams, or 20 percent to 30 percent, total.
So what's "ongoing?" Well, apparently the reps whose positions were eliminated have the opportunity to apply for reassignment somewhere else on the sales side. As the Sanofi statement went, "[W]e have identified areas where we will prioritize sales support and others where reductions are necessary." The priority areas ended yesterday with some open positions.
Once the staffers get the "yea" or "nay" on reassignment, any still-open spots will be backfilled with contract reps. The rest of the contractors will hit the exits. So until the contract reps find out their fates, we won't know just how many Sanofi sales folks will be back on the job market.