Novartis whacks 3 Sandoz plants, 770 jobs, despite generic units' sales growth

A 10% revenue expansion in Novartis' ($NVS) generics unit Sandoz was one of the positives in the Swiss drugmaker's second quarter earnings, but it will not keep the drugmaker from closing three Sandoz plants next year and cutting about 770 jobs to improve margins even more. The drugmaker is closing a packaging plant in Gerlingen, Germany, moving much of that work to a plant in Poland where it recently added packaging lines. An antibiotics plant in Frankfurt will also get the boot because of price pressure on products from Asian API makers. About 600 jobs are being lost at those two plants. An API plant in India also will be closed by the end of 2016, costing another 170 jobs. While Sandoz turned in a 10% boost in sales it was not enough to offset weakness elsewhere, that led to a 5% drop in the Swiss drugmaker's revenues for the quarter to $12.7 billion. More from FiercePharmaManufacturing | More from FiercePharma