Pfizer to lay off 20% of sales force

Share this article:
In a move many say will have wide repercussions, Pfizer said yesterday it plans to trim its US sales force by 20%. The company said the layoffs are part of an ongoing cost-cutting strategy. “This is an important step toward making Pfizer a more agile and effective company," said Jeffrey Kindler, Pfizer’s new CEO, in a statement. Reductions will begin immediately, based on performance appraisals, and will be completed by the end of the year, a Pfizer spokesperson told MM&M. The spokesperson added that the layoffs will not be region-specific and that the company will maintain its territory structure. "We'll have a reconfigured sales organization in place by April," she said. Pfizer fields the largest sales force of any pharma company—around 11,000 including primary care, specialty and management—so a 20% reduction equates to about 2,200. Pfizer stands to save upwards of $450 million annually from the cuts, according to a research report issued yesterday by Prudential Equity Group. Analysts said Pfizer’s move may portend a broader shift toward leaner sales forces among other companies. “It seems like it’s the end of an arms race,” Michael Krensavage, an analyst from Raymond James, told The New York Times. "People emulate Pfizer, and this will give other companies leeway to consider pulling back," Jaideep Bajaj, managing director for sales-consulting firm ZS Associates, told The Wall Street Journal. Pfizer also announced yesterday it had ended a research collaboration with Akzo unit Organon to develop asenapine, a treatment for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder that analysts had predicted could be a blockbuster. The two announcements came shortly before Pfizer’s Thursday pipeline report for investors.
Share this article:
You must be a registered member of MMM to post a comment.
close

Next Article in Channel

Email Newsletters

MM&M EBOOK: PATIENT ACCESS

Patient access to pharmaceuticals is a tale of two worlds—affordability has improved for the majority, while the minority is hampered by cost, distribution and red tape. To provide marketers with a well-rounded perspective, MM&M presents this e-book chock full of key insights. Click here to access it.

More in Channel

Five things for pharma marketers to know: Monday, September 15

Five things for pharma marketers to know: ...

Pharma has sought 76 meetings with FDA over biosimilars; Gilead licenses Sovaldi to India generic drugmakers; Pfizer and Ranbaxy Lipitor lawsuit dismissed.

Liraglutide, aiming for new indication, gets new name

Liraglutide, aiming for new indication, gets new name

Why Novo Nordisk is choosing not to leverage Victoza's brand equity as it seeks a weight-loss indication for liraglutide.

Five things for pharma marketers to know: Friday, September 12

Five things for pharma marketers to know: Friday, ...

An FDA panel voted in favor of liraglutide for weight loss; Allergan investors backing an attempted takeover of the firm crossed a critical threshold; and 100 million health wearables are ...