Pfizer to cut 300 staff

Impact at company’s Kirkland headquarters remains unclear
By Robert Frank

Facing falling revenue as patents on its popular drugs expire, Pfizer Canada announced, Oct. 28, that it plans to “eliminate approximately 11 per cent of its Canadian workforce.”

In an interview, the company declined to specify how many of the nearly 600 employees at the company’s head office in Kirkland will lose their jobs.

“There will be some impact in Kirkland,” Rhonda O’Gallagher told The Suburban. “We’re not providing a regional or site breakdown.”

The drug firm’s corporate communications director said that most people who are affected are involved in marketing selling the company’s products to general practitioners. She added that although they report to the Kirkland-based primary care department, “many of them work remotely in the field across Canada.”

“These were difficult decisions to take and we are committed to treat these employees fairly,” O’Gallagher continued. “They have received several weeks notice plus severance pay during the transition period.”

She explained that Pfizer recently lost patents on a number of drugs such as cholesterol reducer Lipitor—the best selling drug in pharmaceutical history—and Norvasc, a popular treatment for angina and high blood pressure.

“Pfizer remains very committed to the Montreal area and the province of Quebec,” O’Gallagher affirmed.

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