Professional Marketing briefs: March 2014

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Adam Schechter
Adam Schechter

A Louisiana appeals court overturned a $257.7 million settlement over Johnson & Johnson's marketing of the antipsychotic Risperdal. Bloomberg reports that the court said prosecutors failed to provide enough evidence of wrongdoing. Although the decision moves a chunk of money back onto J&J's balance sheet, the drugmaker is still working through other issues, including a Department of Justice investigation into allegations which include that the company tied speakers' fees to Risperdal prescription rates.

Novartis is cutting or relocating up to 4,000 jobs. Reuters sourced the report published by the paper NZZ am Sonntag, which tracked down an internal cor­porate email. Reuters says these counts will inflict pink slips on about 6% of the Swiss company's pharmaceutical employees.

Merck's latest earnings announcement indicates the company is in rebuild mode, and its focus on oncology means building out that layer of expertise. The company is not, however, on the hunt for sales reps. EVP Adam Schechter (pictured) said that although the company has made significant cuts in its US field force, “we think we are the right size now.”

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