Regeneron Cuts Some Staff as It Reworks Partnership With Sanofi


(Bloomberg) -- Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. said it plans to cut some staff as it restructures its partnership with French drugmaker Sanofi, with whom it had shared drug sales responsibilities.

Regeneron employees to be affected work on the rheumatoid arthritis drug Kevzara, which Sanofi is expected to gain global rights to under the restructuring. There will be no Kevzara roles at Regeneron moving forward, the company said. It’s also making changes to the field staff for the heart drug it sells with Sanofi, called Praluent.

That includes letting go of 15 field and supporting staff in New York in mid-February as part of the restructuring. Regeneron staff across the country may also be affected, though the company declined to comment further because it said it is still finalizing specifics.

“We will be reducing the size of our commercial and medical affairs teams related to the Kevzara and Praluent restructuring. We are currently talking to impacted teams and individuals and they will be given the opportunity to apply for other open roles where possible,” a Regeneron spokeswoman said.

The Sanofi collaboration brought in $404.2 million in the third quarter, or about 20% of Regeneron’s total revenue. Regeneron shares were down 0.2% at 1:17 p.m. in New York.

The New York job cuts were made public in a New York State WARN notice dated Dec. 20 and posted online. WARN notices are required by some states when companies let workers go. They can provide a local, but often incomplete, picture of a company’s personnel changes. Regeneron had more than 7,300 employees at the end of last year, according to its 2018 annual report.

Tarrytown, New York-based Regeneron and Paris-based Sanofi have long collaborated on the antibody drug Kevzara, the cholesterol drug Praluent and the eczema and asthma therapy Dupixent.

But profitability has primarily come from Dupixent, Robert Landry, Regeneron’s chief financial officer, told investors in November, and had prompted discussions under new Sanofi Chief Executive Officer Paul Hudson. Hudson announced a major shift in Sanofi’s drug research strategy earlier this month as part of an effort to revitalize the large French drugmaker.

The Sanofi-Regeneron partnership restructuring will also reshuffle rights for Praluent, giving Sanofi ex-U.S. rights and Regeneron sole U.S. rights. The Dupixent agreement, meanwhile, will remain unchanged.

Sanofi and Regeneron announced those changes on Dec. 10 and expect to finalize them in the first quarter of next year. Regeneron said at the time that the changes “are expected to increase efficiency and streamline operations for the products.”

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

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