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Shire Layoffs Soon?

This isn’t sounding so good, either. Shire is moving its Pennsylvania site, relocating people to the main campus in Lexington, Massachusetts, but now it appears that quite a few of them won’t be making the trip:

The biotech filed a WARN letter with the state of Pennsylvania outlining plans to downsize its operations at its Chesterbrook, PA, campus by up to 600 staffers, but has yet to determine who will go to Massachusetts and who will face the ax.
The Shire letter, sent in late January by a company lawyer named Lawrence Borska, says that the company is starting to transfer jobs from its Chesterbrook, PA, facilities to the Lexington, MA, headquarters this month and will continue for the next year. An “anticipated mass layoff” is expected to begin in a matter of weeks.

More details as they come out, but generally speaking, a WARN letter is the real thing.

9 comments on “Shire Layoffs Soon?”

  1. The Aqueous Layer says:

    Speaking of Cambridge/Boston layoffs, has any details of the Pfizer layoffs come to light?

  2. NJBiologist says:

    Interesting… Shire just sent out emails about “an exclusive biopharma career event” to be held at the Hilton Garden Inn Boston-Waltham on 3/31.

  3. M says:

    As a Pennsylvanian who has been through pharma layoffs, I would recommend that those PA med chemists that may be affected by the layoffs contact the Pennsylvania Drug Discovery Institute (, a non-profit that provides assistance to local displaced drug discovery scientists.
    They also take donations of unused laboratory equipment, research chemicals, etc which may be dispersed in turn to help local startups.

  4. Postdoc says:

    NJBiologist, I got the same e-mail. I was actually considering attending, but not now.

  5. patentgeek says:

    I second #4’s suggestion. Alan Reitz, who started PDDI after getting laid off from JNJ, is a real gentleman, and strongly dedicated to helping others get through these transitions.

  6. SteveM says:

    Re: NJ Biologist “Shire just sent out emails about “an exclusive biopharma career event”
    By now a standard tactic. I.e., do a layoff and then a rehire to unload American STEM workers over 40 and replace with them with younger H-1B’s.
    I admire M and his efforts with the Pennsylvania Drug Discovery Institute, but frankly, it’s probably better to steer American scientists into other lines of work, because they are being written off by the Cronies in the C-Suites and in Washington.
    The American STEM worker – stick a fork in him because he’s cooked.

  7. Cato the Elder says:

    @2 A preview of the “exclusive biopharma career event”:

  8. InsilicoConsulting says:

    H1B’s replacing >40 yr old STEM scientists /Americans? In drug discovery not IT?
    I can smell the dope from across the pacific and atlantic.

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