Takeda shuffles sales force as restructuring continues
- The U.S. arm of Takeda Pharmaceuticals is completing its shift of staff from Deerfield, Illinois, to Boston, including job cuts, as part of the $725 million R&D restructuring that began in 2016, and the vaccine business unit consolidation that dates back to 2015.
- The job cuts and restructuring are in part due to changes following the Ariad acquisition, shifts in portfolio, and the agreement with PRA Health Services that moved the responsibility for clinical development out of house.
- The Illinois site will remain home to the company's commercial organization, while many executives from the Chicago area relocate up to Boston.
According to a flurry of news reports, Takeda, as the final step of a major reorganization, has shifted Deerfield, Illinois-based employees to the Boston area and cut jobs for field-based employees. This hasn't been a sudden move but rather a gradual change over a number of years, a Takeda spokesperson confirmed in an email to BioPharma Dive today.
"The move to reduce the U.S. field force was tied to a shift in our portfolio and consolidating healthcare environment," said Takeda's Jim Schwartz. This move has included a tight-knit collaboration with the contract research organization PRA Health Services, which has shifted staff with operational expertise from Takeda to PRA Health, as well as moving over responsibility for Phase 1 to Phase 4 trials. Approximately 300 Takeda employees will move over to PRA Health.
In 2016, Takeda began a shift to focus U.S. business unit resources towards the antidepressant Trintellix (vortioexetine) and the gastrointestinal drug Entyvio (vedolizumab). This, as Schwartz explained, required the company to make changes to its portfolio and align promotional resources in response to the changes and what he described as "a consolidating healthcare environment." This included "changes to the size, structure and role of our field-based teams in the U.S. business unit."
Clarifying the changes a little further, but without being specific about numbers, Takeda confirmed the addition of a dedicated neuroscience sales team targeting psychiatrists who treat major depressive disorder, restructuring of sales and marketing to focus on healthcare professionals who treat and manage inflammatory bowel disease, and a reduction in primary care field personnel.
Rather than this being the death knell for the Deerfield site, Takeda insists that it is committed to the location as a home for its commercial organization. "In addition to our sales and marketing, and medical affairs teams, the R&D Marketed Products team also works out of the Deerfield site. Some employees in global functions such as IT, supply chain, and legal also work at the Deerfield site," said Schwartz.
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