Amgen to layoff 350 former Horizon employees following $28B purchase

It is often a matter of how many and when layoffs will occur in the biopharmaceutical industry after a merger.

Amgen’s buyout of Horizon for $27.8 Billion, announced in December last year and completed this month, was swift. A spokesperson revealed that Amgen will eliminate the positions of 350 former Horizon employees this week where there is an “overlap” with other Amgen teams.

The company announced that separation dates will start on December 30 this year and run through December 2024.

The spokesperson said that more than 80% former Horizon employees in the U.S. have been “placed into Amgen roles reflecting the knowledge and abilities we need to continue providing care for patients with rare diseases.”

Horizon was based in the U.S. but moved to Ireland in 2014 after Vidara Therapeutics, a company it purchased for $600 million, became its parent company.

Amgen is on a cutting-edge cost-cutting drive this year. It has cut 300 jobs in January and 450 in May. attributed the cuts to ‘intensifying price pressure and high inflation.

Amgen spokesperson stated that the company employs approximately 26,700 people in total worldwide following the Horizon purchase.

In the industry, it is now common to see layoffs after a merger or acquisition. Earlier this month, Biogen layoffs of 1,000 employees in a “redesign” of the company.

CSL is another company that has adopted the same playbook. Last year, it announced plans to cut 85 employees shortly after it completed its $11.7 billion purchase of Vifor.

Gilead Sciences had announced earlier in 2022 that it would layoff over 100 employees at Immunomedics’ former headquarters, following the $21 billion purchase of the company.

Merck also laid off several Acceleron employees in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 2022. This was just a few months after Merck had struck a $11.5 billion deal to acquire the Boston-based specialist in rare diseases.