King Pharmaceuticals to lay off 22% of its workforce


BRISTOL, Tenn. King Pharmaceuticals will lay off 22% of its workforce as part of its acquisition of Alpharma and restructuring, the drug maker announced Wednesday.

The layoffs will affect 760 positions, of which 240 are related to theAlpharma acquisition and 520 to the restructuring program, including 140 corporate positions and 380 sales positions.

“Following the recent court decision relating to our Skelaxin (metaxalone) patents and the uncertainty that it creates with respect to the continued exclusivity of the product, we thoroughly assessed our cost structure,” King chairman, president and CEO Brian Markison said in a statement. “We concluded the restructuring measures announced today will better position us to support the near-term priorities of our strategic plan.”

Markison referred to a decision by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York that invalidated two patents related to Skelaxin. King plans to appeal the decision.

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