AstraZeneca cuts 400 jobs in Sweden

AstraZeneca ($AZN) said it was going to cut 7,300 more jobs and that is what it has started doing.  

In Sweden, that means 400 jobs, mostly administrative, with a majority coming from a facility in Södertälje, reports The Local. The cuts follow negotiations with the union, the paper says.

"Those who are affected in this cut are economists, lawyers, the personnel department, IT technicians, lab technicians and those types of broad competencies," says Ann-Leena Mikiver, an AstraZeneca spokeswoman. "The first 50 left two weeks ago. Some will leave during the summer and others early this autumn and the whole move should be completed in December," she told TT news agency.

In February, the U.K. company announced it was cutting 7,300 more jobs, on top of the 21,000 it already axed in recent years. In the latest round, half of the cuts will hit sales and administration, with the other half divided between R&D (2,200) and operations (1,350). With the layoffs and other cost cuts, AstraZeneca hopes to slice $1.6 billion off its annual costs.

In a bit of poetic justice, the man who ordered all of these reductions, CEO David Brennan, was himself pressured out in April when the board capitulated to unhappy investors.

The new chairman, Leif Johansson, is looking for a new CEO, one willing to take on a company that has little in the pipeline to replace the revenue-producing drugs dribbling off of patents and that has a recent history of R&D failures. And one with the kind of morale problems that come when your company is cutting thousands and thousands of colleagues.

- read The Local story