Abbott Labs to cut 1,000 jobs

Abbott Laboratories plans to eliminate 1,000 jobs, including some at its Lake County headquarters just across the state line in Abbott Park, Ill. The jobs cuts will come as part of a restructuring of the company’s diagnostic business, even though the business is growing, according to a report the company filed with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission last week.

The drug and medical device company expects the restructuring plan, to be implemented over the next four years, to generate more than $150 million in annual pre-tax savings. Abbott said the cuts will be made globally, but the company declined to say how many jobs will be cut in Illinois.

Abbott spokeswoman Kelly Morrison told SBT that only 100 jobs will be eliminated over the next year. Ultimately, the company will close its plant in South Pasadena, Calif., and eliminate jobs in Abbott Park and Santa Clara, Calif., she said.

Abbott’s diagnostic business reported global sales of $1.8 billion in the first half of the year, up 17 percent from the same period a year ago.

This week’s announcement of job cuts is likely to put a damper on speculation that the company plans to move its headquarters and build a new campus in Wisconsin. Abbott has purchased 482 acres near the intersection of Interstate 94 and the Highway 165/Q interchange in Pleasant Prairie.

Pleasant Prairie officials recently approved a development agreement for the site. According to the development agreement, the company planned to build a gated campus of office and research buildings.

"Today’s announcement is unrelated to Pleasant Prairie," Morrison said. She said the company purchased the Pleasant Prairie site in anticipation of future growth. "No definitive timeline or specific plans are in place at this time for the property," Morrison said.

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