Abbott lays off undisclosed number of workers

475398888_Just one week after disclosing its shaky fourth-quarter financial figures, Abbott Laboratories laid off an unspecified number of employees at its North Chicago, Ill., headquarters on Tuesday.

Abbott is the largest private employer of Kenosha County residents. The company has approximately 70,000 employees worldwide and an estimated $22 billion in annual net sales, according to its website.

Scott Stoffel, Abbott’s senior director of external communications and corporate public affairs, did not release the number of layoffs or the department or departments involved in the cutbacks.

“We continuously assess our operations to ensure we have the right resources in the right locations,” said Scott Stoffel, Abbott senior director of external communications and corporate public affairs. “I don’t have any further details to provide.”

Abbott is one of the largest global healthcare companies, comprising four equal-sized businesses: diagnostics, medical devices, nutritionals and branded generic pharmaceuticals.

It was the third straight year Abbott opted for a round of layoffs. The company split into two in January 2013 when AbbVie Inc. was formed to take over its researched-based pharmaceuticals.

Abbott struggled at times in 2013 primarily due to the foreign currency exchange and a product recall.

“In 2013, despite some challenges, we achieved our expectations for earnings growth, including more than 100 basis points of operating margin expansion,” Miles D. White, Abbott chairman and chief executive officer, said in the company’s fourth-quarter report. “In 2014, we are targeting another year of double-digit ongoing earnings-per-share growth.”

Date: January 29, 2014


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