Amid back office consolidation, Gilead axes 179 jobs in California

Gilead is chopping 179 jobs in its home state of California as it scales down its headquarters in favor of a hub in North Carolina.

Up to half of the roles would shift to Research Triangle Park, where the company is setting up a new business services and information technology center, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. The precise number will depend on how many employees choose to relocate.

Per a WARN notice filed with the state, the layoffs are expected to be effective May 30.

Establishing a centralized location to process back office functions — often in places with cheaper rent cost or more economic incentives — has become a popular consolidation exercise in pharma in recent years.

Novartis’ business services unit is spread around the globe, while J&J, Bristol Myers Squibb and Amgen all have similar operations in the Tampa Bay, FL area.

Foster City, CA-based Gilead announced plans for its $5 million project last month. The Research Triangle office would provide “financial, human resources, and information technology services, including cybersecurity and digital transformation initiatives.”

In total, that site is expected to employ 275 people, and the company is eligible for close to $10 million in reimbursement from the state over 12 years.