Novartis to cut almost 2,000 US jobs this year

January 13, 2012 - 5:00 AM

GENEVA (AP) — Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis AG says it is cutting 1,960 jobs in the United States this year.

The drug maker says the job cuts will affect 1,630 sales positions in the field and 330 posts at its U.S. headquarters in New Jersey.

The Basel-based company says the restructuring is necessary because of the expiry of its patent for the best-selling hypertension drug Diovan and the failure of a clinical study into another hypertension drug Tekturna.

Novartis said in a statement Friday that the restructuring would save $450 million a year after an initial charge of $160 million.

It said a reassessment of the future sales potential of Tekturna, which is known as Rasilez outside of the U.S., will result in an exceptional charge of $900 million.