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King Pharmaceuticals restructuring includes estimated 760 layoffs

Staff Report • Feb 3, 2009 at 12:00 AM

King Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced today it is restructuring and laying off more workers to decrease operating expenses. The cuts include 70 workers at King's Bristol headquarters, representing a 14 percent reduction in the firms local labor force.According to King's press release, these actions - when combined with the reduction in headcount arising from King’s recent acquisition of Alpharma Inc. - result in a total workforce reduction of approximately 760 jobs - about 22 percent of the firms' total labor force.Approximately 240 of these jobs are corporate positions associated with the Alpharma acquisition. About 520 of the lost jobs are associated with the today's restructuring, of which approximately 380 are field sales positions and approximately 140 are corporate positions. Following the restructuring, the Company’s sales force promoting its branded prescription products will total approximately 720.Brian A. Markison, chairman, president and chief executive officer of King, said, "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've assessed our cost structure. We concluded the restructuring measures announced today will better position us to support the near-term priorities of our strategic plan."In connection with its restructuring initiatives, King estimates that it will incur costs resulting in a special charge of between $50 million and $55 million, all of which it expects to incur in the first half of 2009. These costs are exclusive of any special charges associated with the Company’s activities related to the integration of Alpharma.King also plans to provide more details with respect to today’s announcement during its conference call on Feb. 26, when it intends to announce its financial results for the fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2008.

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