Lilly Acquisition Would Eliminate Icos Employees

December 15, 2006
Pharmaceutical Technology Editors
ePT--the Electronic Newsletter of Pharmaceutical Technology

Bothell, WA (December 12)?If the shareholders of biotechnology company Icos Corp. approve a proposed buyout by Eli Lilly and Co., all of Icos?s 700 employees will lose their jobs.

Bothell, WA (December 12)-If the shareholders of biotechnology company Icos Corp. (www.icos.com) approve a proposed buyout by Eli Lilly and Co. (Indianapolis, IN, www.lilly.com), all of Icos’s 700 employees will lose their jobs. Icos Spokeswoman Lacy Fitzpatrick said, “Essentially all employees have been notified ... that if the transaction closes, they would not stay on.” She added that Icos will continue to employ contract-manufacturing workers throughout 2007 to fulfill drug-manufacturing agreements with other companies.

Members of Icos’s board already have approved the sale for $32 per share. Officials had expected layoffs, but not the elimination of the entire work force. Icos cofounder George Rathmann said he was “surprised” and “disappointed” by news of the layoffs.

In October, Lilly revealed its plan to purchase Icos, Lilly’s marketing partner for the erectile-dysfunction drug “Cialis,” for $2.1 billion. At the time of the announcement, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Sidney Taurel said that the company foresaw "a significant number of jobs will be eliminated at Icos."

Icos shareholders will vote on the acquisition at a meeting in Bothell on Dec. 19.