[COLOR="#000000"]Sanofi, France’s biggest drugmaker, said it may eliminate as many as 900 jobs in three years as part of a strategy to trim operations in its home market.
The company hasn’t reached a decision on the future of its Toulouse research site, Paris-based Sanofi said in a statement today. The center employs about 640 researchers, which brings the number of jobs at risk to more than 1,500, according to labor unions.
Worker representatives have been protesting the plan, one in a broader wave of cost-cutting measures by French companies that include PSA Peugeot Citroen and Carrefour SA, since Sanofi first announced an overhaul on July 5. Union delegates and employees have staged protests every Thursday across France in recent weeks, marching in the streets with local politicians in places like Toulouse, where researchers discovered the blood- thinner Plavix.
“It’s a sad day for Toulouse and for France,” Jean-Louis Chauzy, president of the region’s council on the economy, social affairs and the environment, said in a telephone interview. “Research may have to evolve, but Sanofi should retain jobs.”[/color]