Abbott Laboratories Cutting 1,000 Workers

By Staff Report

Aug. 21, 2008

Abbott Laboratories Inc. plans to lay off 1,000 employees, part of a bid to slash $150 million in costs from its diagnostic test business, the drug and medical device maker said Thursday, August 21.

The plan to “streamline global manufacturing operations” will result in $370 million in pre-tax charges over the next several years, including $140 million in the third quarter of this year, the North Chicago, Illinois-based company said in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

A spokeswoman said about 1,000 workers would be laid off globally, but she wouldn’t say where those cuts would occur. Abbott’s core diagnostics division includes nearly 3,000 workers in Lake County, Illinois. The division makes large equipment and tests that screen specimens for diseases.

Abbott said “employee-related costs” will represent about $110 million of the charges.

Abbott in January 2007 agreed to sell the diagnostics division to General Electric Co. for $8.1 billion, but that deal unraveled several months later when the parties couldn’t finalize terms.

Filed by Mike Colias of Crain’s Chicago Business, a sister publication of Workforce Management. To comment, e-mail

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