Novartis to shed Horsham jobs

Novartis dealt a fresh blow to the pharmaceutical sector yesterday by unveiling moves to shed around 500 jobs at its Horsham site in West Sussex.

The Swiss group – whose decision comes six weeks after Pfizer revealed plans to close its site in Sandwich, Kent – will consult on plans to restructure the site, which employs some 950 staff, with 330 of those devoted to respiratory research. Novartis said it would to maintain the respiratory research activities.

"Novartis is continuously evaluating its resources allocation to ensure that the organisation is highly flexible and able to proactively adapt to external challenges which best meet the needs of its customers," Sue Webb, the company's general manager for the UK & Ireland, said.