So the Bayer/Monsanto deal has gone through, and its sequel is exactly what you think it is: job cuts. About 10% of the company’s global work force is being let go. As some readers may know, I’ve already experienced the joys of losing a job as a result of a big Bayer move (in my case, the merger/takeover with Schering AG some years ago), so I know just what a lot of people are experiencing.
I’ve seen the letter that Bayer sent out to its employees, and it’s pretty much what you’d expect. “Embrace change“, “strengthen our core businesses“, competitive global environment“, “new opportunities“, and “significantly enhance productivity and profitability” all make appearances in the first few sentences, and anyone who didn’t just fall off the turnip truck knows that when you get a letter from upper management with those sorts of phrases in it that it’s going to be a bad day at the office.
The main thing is that company will now be Pharma, Consumer Products, and Crop Science, which means that things like Animal Health are being sold off. It also means that about 4100 jobs will be cut in Crop Sciences, and about 900 in worldwide Pharma R&D. Additionally, the company had built a plant to produce Factor VIII for hemophilia in Wuppertal (in addition to one already in Berkeley), but they’re going to completely eat that (no doubt expensive) German facility with the loss of another 350 jobs. The company says that further cuts are coming from 2022 onwards in R&D, in both the US and Germany, net about 200 jobs lost (500 cut, 300 added). And up to 6,000 jobs are being cut in various corporate functions, business services, and so on.
This would seem to mean that a significant number of the total job losses will be in Germany, which I suppose is a measure of how seriously the company is about all this. Cutting positions under German labor laws is not the work of a moment, which as you would imagine was a factor that had occurred to all of us working in Bayer’s US R&D back in the day. From what I understand, the company is still rolling out more details to its worldwide employees, and I wish people luck as they find out what’s to become of them. . .