Now that Bristol-Myers Squibb ($BMY) has taken full control of Amylin's diabetes drugs, it's time to sweep up after the merger party. BMS says it is closing down the storied, 266,000-square-foot headquarters facility in La Jolla, CA at the end of next year, with plans to lay off hundreds of the remaining staffers who don't make a transfer.
"By the end of 2014, we plan to have all work being done in San Diego transitioned to other Bristol-Myers Squibb sites," says spokesman Frederick Egenolf in an email to FierceBiotech. "Beyond that, we will likely have a small number of people working on closing the San Diego facilities by the end of Q1 2015."
Around 100 to 125 of the remaining 420 staffers in San Diego will be offered a chance to relocate to other BMS sites, he says, but there's no certainty how many will take that option. Egenolf says that 103 San Diego staffers were let go in the first two months of the year, bringing the total head count on layoffs to at least 400. The realignment at Amylin involves a mix of R&D, administrative, and corporate staff.
The decision to shutter the San Diego operation is another blow for the local biotech community, which recently learned from FierceBiotech that Pfizer had decided to shut down its CovX unit and lay off about 100 workers there. But San Diego is home to a significant biotech hub, and local economic development officials hope that a few may go on to start new companies of their own.
There will be no lack of office space available if they do. BMS is planning to sell off the facility once it's handed out the final pink slips.
Amylin had a sizeable work force of some 1,250 when Bristol-Myers moved in to scoop up the company 8 months ago for $5.3 billion. Some 300 staffers at a manufacturing site in Ohio and about 400 sales people in the field are being "absorbed" into BMS.
- here's the statement from BMS