San Diego Business Journal

Biogen Idec Inc., one of the world’s largest makers of multiple sclerosis drugs, said Nov. 3 that it was restructuring its operations by closing its San Diego site along with two other facilities in Massachusetts.

In a press announcement, the company said it was laying off 13 percent of its work force, or 650 employees, in a series of cutbacks and strategic moves designed to save $300 million a year.

Taking the biggest hit will be the former Idec Pharmaceuticals Corp. oncology research site in San Diego, which employs 327 workers. Biogen, then based in Cambridge, Mass., purchased Idec in 2003.

A company spokeswoman said about 75 local employees, or about 25 percent of the local work force, would be offered jobs at company facilities in Cambridge, Mass., and Research Triangle Park, N.C.

The company will terminate its efforts in cardiovascular medicine and seek to spin out or outlicense its oncology assets as part of a strategy to focus on its core business, according to the announcement.

The company said it generates more than $4 billion in worldwide annual revenues.

— Steve Sinovic