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Amid restructure, Bayer nixes 1,500 roles in the first quarter of the year

by Gus Iversen, Editor in Chief | May 20, 2024
Business Affairs
Last Tuesday, Bayer AG announced its first-quarter 2024 financial results, and offered new details on planned layoffs as the company embarks on a restructure.

Sales reached $15 billion (€13.8 billion), slightly below the same period last year when adjusted for currency and portfolio. Core earnings per share were reported at $3.06 (€2.82) and free cash flow improved to -$2.82 billion (-€2.6 billion), driven by lower litigation payouts. The company reaffirmed its 2024 outlook at constant currencies.

Discussing the earnings on a media call, CEO Bill Anderson disclosed that 1,500 roles were eliminated during the first three months of the year as part of a plan to streamline the company and reorganize it for better efficiency. Anderson, who took over the company last June, said in part:

    Both our Crop Science and Pharmaceuticals teams have already announced the architecture of their new organizations. Julio just took over Consumer Health two weeks ago and they are shaping their organization with speed and focus. We’re consolidating roles, designing teams for more impact, and taking out layers. Our senior leadership circle is already noticeably smaller than it was a year ago. In the first quarter alone, we’ve reduced 1,500 roles, approximately two thirds of these were management jobs. We have a target of 500 million euros of sustainable cost savings in 2024 and 2 billion euros in 2026. And we’re focused on delivering. We’ll continue to report on this on a quarterly basis so you’re clear on how our organization is progressing.
The restructure is geared toward implementing a Dynamic Shared Ownership (DSO) operating model.

“We’re consolidating roles, designing teams for more impact, and taking out layers," Anderson said of the new model. "The most important measure of our impact will be much greater than a job number or a cost savings target. It will be in our ability to innovate, grow our businesses, and improve life for our customers.”

In the company's crop science division, there are 250 teams in place working in DSO. The pharmaceuticals division has 180 teams up and running, and the consumer health unit has 90.

Earlier this year, Bayer announced a partnership with Google Cloud to accelerate development of AI-powered radiology applications. It also entered a collaborative effort with Hologic to enhance contrast-enhanced mammography (CEM) technology and accessibility, a promising development in the field of breast imaging.

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