Glaxo slashes U.S. sales force by 1,000 jobs

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GlaxoSmithKline is restructuring its U.S. operations, initially by reducing its U.S. sales force by 1,000.

Spokeswoman Mary Anne Rhyne said that the company will switch from having dual U.S. headquarters, in Philadelphia and in Research Triangle Park, N.C., to operating just the N.C. headquarters. Rhyne added that the consolidation also will eliminate confusion. However, she said that there are no current plans to cut jobs or close offices in Philadelphia.

The London-based drugmaker will eliminate about 1,800 U.S. sales positions by not filling some posts that are already vacant and shifting some sales representatives to the vaccines sector. Staff dealing with primary care products will be most affected by the cutbacks, while GlaxoSmithKline said it would add positions in vaccines and specialty pharmaceuticals, including oncology, making the net number of job losses around 1,000.

GlaxoSmithKline has about 8,500 U.S. sales representatives.

In early October, the company announced it would eliminate 850 research and development positions company-wide, including an undisclosed number in Research Triangle Park, N.C.
The company noted that workers losing jobs are being told this week, and the cuts will be completed by the year’s end.