Roche cuts 4,800 jobs over price pressure and product setbacks

SWISS pharmaceutical firm Roche announced it would be cutting 4,800 jobs worldwide, or about six per cent of its workforce, over the next two years as part of a wide-ranging restructuring programme forced on it by price pressures.

Most of the planned job cuts will be in its pharma unit, particularly in the sales and marketing divisions, as well as in manufacturing after the setback of diabetes medicine taspoglutide being delayed.

A further 1,500 jobs will be transferred to other locations within the firm, or outsourced. Roche said it would hack Sfr2.4bn ($2.4bn ) from annual costs from 2012 onwards, with Sfr1.8bn of savings expected next year. It expects restructuring costs will amount to Sfr2.7bn from 2010 through to 2012.