Restructuring, Workforce

New report re-ignites fresh buzz that Bayer is prepping an R&D overhaul and job cuts

Just a few months after a German publication reported that Bayer was prepping a top-to-bottom R&D review to see how much money — and jobs — could be squeezed out, the rumor mill has turned smoking hot again with a report from Reuters that seems to confirm the scuttlebutt.

Germany’s Wirtschaftswoche got it started at the end of May that the cuts reach up to 1,000 in the reorganization. Now Reuters reports that job cuts and outsourcing are on the table as the German drug company looks to raise more cash to in-license new therapies for its pipeline.

Joerg Moeller

Bayer has remained silent about a full scale revamp with deep cuts, but freely concedes that it’s always looking at efficiencies. The buzz about layoffs dates back to the beginning of this year, after Andreas Busch, the head of discovery, left Bayer to join Shire — about to be taken over by Takeda — as head of R&D. Bayer then decided to meld its early research and development operations under one office occupied by development chief Joerg Moeller.

Bayer tends to be a careful player in the industry, but can go big from time to time, as we saw when the German company paid $400 million upfront to partner with Loxo. It’s had its ups and downs in the pipeline, but seems determined to stay focused on deals. That strategy landed them in fifth place for overall upfronts in the last 20 months.


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