Takeda to move U.S. headquarters to Boston, affecting 1,000 employees

Takeda is closing its U.S. headquarters near Chicago and opening a site in Boston. (Takeda)

As Takeda works to close its massive Shire buy, the company has unveiled a plan to close its Chicago-area U.S. headquarters and center its U.S. operations in the Boston area where Shire has operations. The move will affect 1,000 employees.

Following a “successful closing” of the Shire buyout, Takeda will “progressively consolidate from Deerfield into the greater Boston area,” spokeswoman Julia Ellwanger said. The deal is subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals, she noted.

“This move, while difficult, will allow closer collaboration across Takeda to best position our future pipeline for success,” Ellwanger added. “It will also simplify our existing Takeda U.S. operations.”

The company announced its $64 billion buyout earlier this year and has been working to close the deal, although it’s faced some questions and resistance in its effort. For instance, this week, Kazu Takeda, a descendant of the company's founder, sided with opponents and said the deal would be “disastrous.”

About 1,000 employees work at the Deerfield site, and some will receive relocation offers, Ellwanger said. Employees will learn their own situation about 6 months after the Shire close, she added.

RELATED: Takeda relocates hundreds of R&D, vaccine jobs and cuts 480 in sales: report 

The headquarters change comes after Takeda reportedly started moving as many as 750 employees in R&D and vaccines from the Deerfield site to Cambridge last year, according to Modern Healthcare. Separately, the drugmaker cut 480 primary care sales reps around the U.S., according to a spokesperson. 

When Takeda completes its headquarters move, its employees will be positioned near thousands of Shire’s U.S. staff. That drugmaker already employs more than 3,000 people in Massachusetts and announced a drive last year to consolidate U.S. operations around two sites in Massachusetts: Lexington and Cambridge. 

With that consolidation, Shire’s rare-disease research and U.S. commercial operations are positioned in Cambridge, while biologic and other manufacturing operations are in Lexington. 

RELATED: Shire will cut U.S. locations and move HQ in consolidation push 

Takeda’s U.S. headquarters move will also position its business near the former headquarters of Ariad, a Boston biotech the Japanese company purchased last year for $5.2 billion. Takeda employs more than 5,000 people in the U.S., according to its website.