In this week's C&EN, an article noting 6 companies having difficulties by Ann Thayer:
...A new board at Canada’s QLT hopes to fix a “precarious financial position.” In 2011, the firm lost $30 million, despite revenues of $42 million. To align spending and headcount, the board has cut 146 jobs.
...Another Canadian firm, Cardiome Pharma, is cutting 85% of its workforce after Merck & Co. stopped work on an oral form of Cardiome’s heart drug vernakalant. The cutbacks will eliminate internal research.
...Chelsea Therapeutics is facing a delay in the approval of its hypotension drug Northera. The North Carolina company will keep only as many of its 49 employees as it needs to complete the regulatory process.
...To cut costs, Savient Pharmaceuticals will reduce its workforce by 35%, or about 60 employees.
...In light of market pressures, Switzerland’s Actelion is cutting 135 positions, or about 5% of its workforce, and emphasizing R&D in specialty areas.
...Meanwhile, Biolex Therapeutics has shut down entirely.
“It is a challenging financing environment, and within that the fates of individual companies and technologies move in all sorts of directions,” says Glen Giovannetti, global life sciences leader at Ernst & Young. “Long term, I think we are in a period of contraction.”Yikes.