Bayer to cut 12,000 jobs globally as part of overhaul

Bayer said it will be cutting thousands of jobs as part of a corporate overhaul, it announced Thursday.

The German-based chemicals and pharmaceutical group, which has a major presence in Whippany, said it would cut about 12,000 jobs out of its 118,200-strong global workforce by the end of 2021. A significant amount of the jobs, it said, would be in Germany.

Bayer also announced in a statement Thursday it has planned to get rid of the Coppertone and Dr. Sholl’s product lines in its Consumer Health business, as well as sell off a 60 percent interest it has in Currenta, a German-based site services provider.

The moves, it said, will boost its core businesses, including Pharmaceuticals, Consumer Health and Crop Science.

“We have made very good progress with Bayer’s strategic development in recent years. As we now proceed with these measures, we are laying the foundation to sustainably enhance Bayer’s performance and profitability,” Werner Baumann, chairman of the board of management of Bayer AG, said. “With these measures, we are positioning Bayer optimally for the future as a life science company.”

The company announced non-cash impairments and write-offs totaling 3.3 billion euros ($3.75 billion U.S.) in the Consumer Health and Pharmaceutical divisions in the fourth quarter of this year.

“Through the end of 2022 alone, we aim to invest a total of around 35 billion euros ($39.8 billion U.S.) in our company’s future, with research and development accounting for over two-thirds of this figure and capital expenditures for just under one-third,” Baumann said

The reduction of jobs will be as follows:

  • 900 jobs in research and development;
  • 300 jobs connected to the Factor VIII facility in Wuppertal;
  • 1,100 jobs at Consumer Health;
  • 4,100 jobs at Crop Science;
  • 5,500-6,000 jobs in corporate functions, supporting functions, business services and country platforms.

“These changes are necessary and lay the foundation for Bayer to enhance its performance and agility. With these measures, we aim to take full advantage of the growth potential for our businesses,” Baumann said. “We are aware of the gravity of these decisions for our employees. As in the past, we will implement the planned measures in a fair and responsible way.”