- Safeguarding of a competitive Swiss platform
- Loss of 193 posts, but redundancies only a small part
- Discussions with social partners on the detailed implementation
As announced at end January, Lonza is vigorously defending the competitiveness of its Swiss production and research platform. The objective is to strengthen Visp’s leading position in the areas of innovation and integrated value creation for life sciences. To safeguard this objective, fixed costs in Basel and Visp are to be reduced by around CHF 40 million over the next 18 months as part of a company-wide re-engineering initiative.
The most important measures to achieve the desired cost reductions – of CHF 500 million on an annual fixed cost basis – will involve downsizing our personnel resources in line with the changed market conditions, reviewing services, leveraging synergies and simplifying work processes.
As part of its cost-saving measures, Lonza has to cut in Visp 193 of the 3,092 posts across Switzerland. This forms part of some 450 job losses announced at end October. The company will take advantage of natural turnover, meaning that at present we estimate that there will be some 30 redundancies. As the measures will also affect employees covered by a collective employment contract, Lonza sees no alternative but to terminate the training agreement which was agreed with the social partners in April 2008. Lonza is to initiate immediate discussions with the social partners and employee representation councils at the Visp site to explain the detailed implementation of the measures. The details for the Basel site are still being clarified.
“Our operations in Switzerland face great challenges. The global economic crisis and the structural changes in the pharma industry have accelerated and intensified the cost pressures we face, in addition to the effects of exchange rate trends with a strong Swiss franc, and increased energy and transport costs. The measures we are implementing will allow our operations in Switzerland to remain competitive,” said Stefan Borgas, CEO of Lonza.
Lonza is one of the world's leading suppliers to the pharmaceutical, healthcare and life science industries. Its products and services span its customers’ needs from research to final product manufacture. Lonza is the global leader in the production and support of active pharmaceutical ingredients both chemically as well as biotechnologically. Biopharmaceuticals are one of the key growth drivers of the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. Lonza has strong capabilities in large and small molecules, peptides, amino acids and niche bioproducts which play an important role in the development of novel medicines and healthcare products. Lonza is a leader in cell-based research, endotoxin detection and cell therapy manufacturing. Lonza is also a leading provider of value chemical and biotech ingredients to the nutrition, hygiene, preservation, agro and personal care markets.
Lonza is headquartered in Basel, Switzerland and is listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange. In 2009, Lonza had sales of CHF 2.69 billion. Further information can be found at www.lonza.com.
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Lonza Group Ltd
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