- Amgen will lay off about 350 Horizon Therapeutics employees after spending $28 billion to buy the Irish drugmaker.
- The acquisition, which closed earlier this month, ranks as the largest in dollar terms in Amgen’s history. It gives the massive biotech company a portfolio of new rare and immune disease drugs that brought in sales of $3.6 billion last year.
- More than 80% of the Horizon staff will continue on with Amgen, according to a statement supplied Wednesday by a company spokesperson. The affected employees largely overlap with existing Amgen teams.
While layoffs following an acquisition are common, the latest round brings Amgen’s total of announced cuts to more than 1,000 this year. The California biotech gave notice of plans to lay off 305 workers in January and 425 in March. After the Horizon deal closed, the company had about 26,700 employees around the world, the spokesperson said.
Amgen certainly isn’t alone in workforce reductions this year. More than 100 biotech companies have laid off staff in 2023, along with major drugmakers including Pfizer and Novartis.
In the case of the Horizon staff, separation dates for various employees will continue through December of next year, with no end dates this year. The remaining staff will have roles at Amgen, “reflecting the knowledge and capabilities we need to continue serving patients suffering from rare diseases,” according to the company’s statement.
Amgen completed the Horizon deal after successfully fending off a challenge from U.S. regulators. The biggest prize for Amgen was Horizon’s Tepezza, an infused biologic drug for an eye disorder which pulled in almost $2 billion in sales last year.