40 in, 200 out: Novartis hires and fires in New Jersey

By Flora Southey contact

- Last updated on GMT

iStock/Feverpitched
iStock/Feverpitched

Related tags: Pharmacology

Swiss-headquartered Novartis Pharmaceuticals plans to add 40 positions to its manufacturing facility in Morris Plains, New Jersey, to focus on cell therapies.

The Morris Plains site develops investigational chimeric antigen receptor T (CAR-T) technologies that use a patient’s engineered T cells to recognise and kill cancer.

The addition of 40 jobs in cell therapy manufacturing comes a couple of weeks after the firm pledged​ to hire 350 employees to focus on its innovative biologics pipeline.

However, as in Switzerland, Novartis is cutting jobs in more traditional areas, filing a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification WARN Notice​ citing the firm’s intention to lay off approximately 250 US-based workers, including 204 positions from its East Hanover, New Jersey-based site.

The company said it is undergoing operational changes, and consolidating its data operations.

“Last year, Novartis created the Global Drug Development function to strengthen our ability to deliver breakthrough medicines for patients. As part of this integration, we will be consolidating our Data Operations organization, including data management and statistical programming, or our global development site in Hyderabad, India,” ​said Novartis in a statement.

Clinical trial complexity

Novartis’ Sofina Mirza-Reid told BioPharma-Reporter the increased complexity of clinical trials was one of the factors considered when planning the changes.

“Our Global Development Operations (GDO) organization, and specifically the Data Operations function, plays a critical role in bringing new medicines to our patients. With clinical trials increasing in number, complexity and cost, we need to look for ways to deliver breakthrough medicines more quickly and more efficiently to benefit our patients.”

“We are planning to consolidate a large part of these operations in Hyderabad,” ​she said.

The move will create jobs in Hyderabad, Mirza-Reid told us.

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