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AstraZeneca to slash 900 jobs in Lund

TT/The Local · 2 Mar 2010, 16:41

Published: 02 Mar 2010 16:41 GMT+01:00

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AstraZeneca revealed on Tuesday that it is moving its research on respiratory and inflammatory diseases to Mölndal in western Sweden. News of the Lund closure was greeted with shock and resignation by staff at the facility.

"A lot of people have been worried. We have escaped previous purges and hoped right until the end that it would work out this time too," said Bo Servenius, chairman of the local chapter of the Akademikerföreningen trade union.

"A lot of people were stunned, silent and withdrawn. There were a lot of questions that came up: what happens now; can we move too?"

AstraZeneca's Lund facility will cease to exist "in the latter part of 2011", while the firm's Mölndal operation is set to expand.

"Operations in Lund and Charnwood will be moved there," according to a company statement.

Some staff from Lund may be offered the possibility of moving to Mölndal, where local Akademikerföreningen chairwoman Aina Illiano confessed to a great deal of uncertainty as to what the future might hold.

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"It's hard to say whether it will be plus or minus for Mölndal in the end," she told news agency TT.

"The company is now going to examine what sort of competence it requires," she added.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

17:23 March 2, 2010 by Audrian
Capitalist is characterised with up and downs, cyclical flectuations. Until a system is developed to replace it with something that is workers friendly the faith of workers will continue to suffer during economic decline. With the gradual decline of social democracy the role that it was assigned to it the minimize sociasl problems, namely correct some of the ills of capitalism, might be with us if business pushes for radical reform.
17:51 March 2, 2010 by Blackman_for_Blondes
what hell of times we are going through..poor people
17:57 March 2, 2010 by krigeren
At least the jobs stayed in the country...or at least some of them!
18:32 March 2, 2010 by Nemesis
This is terrible news.

This affects not only the people in Astra Zeneca, but the entire research base around Lund, which is pretty much state of the art.

As moves go, this one does not make sense.

Lund has a strong reseach base in several areas. It makes no sense to move research operations away from Lund to an area, where it would be harder to hire and hold onto quality staff stright out of university.

Looks like Astra Zeneca is in worse shape than its share price implies. Astra Zeneca is a research driven corporation. Whoever made this decisions is risking destroying the company by removing its innovative edge.
21:36 March 2, 2010 by Davey-jo
There's more. In UK, AZ is closing a research facility in Loughborough with the loss of 1200 jobs. 3500 research post worldwide are going along with thousands of other posts.

Are things really that bad with AZ that they have to cut off their future just to stay afloat?
00:10 March 3, 2010 by Tiddler
AZ is ahead of the pack.

The world is still in the very early stages of a 20 year depression that will make the Great Depression seem like a minor downturn, and reality has hit AZ before most of the other corporations.
00:31 March 3, 2010 by Blackman_for_Blondes

There is alot of rumours about this in south America that Europe is finished...in the next twenty years..
00:39 March 3, 2010 by Nemesis
@ Tiddler & Blackman_for_Blondes

You are talking complete and utter rubbish.
00:46 March 3, 2010 by Luke35711
This is nothing in comparison with tens of thousands of jobs Pfizer have already cut. The system is, indeed, broken. Hype after hype, people are not willing to work hard and think independently, anymore.
02:41 March 3, 2010 by Nilspet

comment #7 is not entirely baseless...(you can read FORBES and Newsweek and many other global magazines!) no body how many years it will take before Europe is finished but it is destined to be if we keep losing jobs to the rest of the world. AZ is an innovative firm and there are more people needing drugs than ever ..how come they cutting back? Well..you know BRIC? BRIC is going to lead the world in the next 20-30 years like the US and Europe were doing for 3-4 decades. I am no expert on medical sciences but in rail technology..China is now leading the world..just 10 years ago you would laugh if somebody told you that the Chinese would put a high speed train on a test track. Now they have the most advanced high speed rail in the world. The US has not ever started and Europe have not progressed very much.

I think it is very possible that in the next 20-30 years the best drug labs in the world would be situated in BRIC rather than US and Europe.
03:34 March 3, 2010 by Davey-jo
@ Nilspet "I think it is very possible that in the next 20-30 years the best drug labs in the world would be situated in BRIC rather than US and Europe."

Not the best; just the cheapest.


They are talking rhubarb.
08:18 March 3, 2010 by StockholmSam
This is what happens when the long-term vision of the company conflicts with the short-term desires of shareholders. PROFIT NOW! DIVIDENDS NOW! Profitability must be immediate or else share prices will fall. While the shareholder model has many benefits, this is one of the pitfalls. I don't know how to fix it, but I know this...sometimes a company needs to go through a period of losses in pursuit of longer-term viability. Too bad shareholders rarely allow this to happen.
09:10 March 3, 2010 by Nemesis
@ Nilspet

Just because the USA is finsihed due to short termisism, does not mean Europe is finished. Europe is a few thousand kilometers East fo the USA.

In Europe bar UK and Ireland, long term research is the norm. Slowly they are getting it into the heads to the UK and Irish that a five minute atention span is pointless and that research is done over eyars before it becomes fruitfull.

Research in China is now world standard in a lot of insitutes, with quite a few still catching up. Europe will eract to that and increase its numbers of scince studetns as it will have no choice.

The USA will keep producing lawyers, religeous lunatics and idiots.

Europe is very different from the USA.
09:22 March 3, 2010 by Malmoimm
Stockholm Sam.. you are not very informed about this change. It is for the long term good of the company. It is not a short term gain for the share holders at the expense of the long term vision of the company. This change will assure the future of the company as the money spinning drugs come off patent. The is very forward thinking, painful as it may seem. They never properly delt with the merger of Astra and Zeneca and had a load of sites that are expensive to run or were only partly full of people. It does not make good business sence to keep so many little places open or places which are only partly full of people.
13:15 March 3, 2010 by Nilspet

that is a good point..the cheapest (almost by default) but I am fairly sure they are going to do good research as well. Just look at how many Chinese and folk from BRIC are working in research labs in the west? If they return home (there is a trend) then all the know-how and all that would be easily moved away.
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