Saneca-owned generics firm Suir Pharma will sack 130 staff says liquidator

By Gareth Macdonald contact

- Last updated on GMT

iStock/eyegelb
iStock/eyegelb

Related tags: Pharmacology

Suir Pharma is set to close or be sold with the loss of 130 jobs less than a year after it was acquired by Slovakian API manufacturer Saneca Pharmaceuticals.

The Irish High Court appointed Michael McAteer from Grant Thornton as Suir's liquidator on Tuesday, tasking him with either finding a buyer for the generic drug manufacturer or with helping it wind up its operations.

A Grant Thornton spokesman told us "the liquidator has met with employees of the company, unfortunately all of whom have been made redundant.  A number of employees will be retained on a needs basis to ensure the plant remains active in order to attract potential buyers.

The firm added that: "Adverts will be placed this week with a view to attracting a buyer for the business which will be marketed as a going concern. The liquidator will contact relevant state agencies for assistance​."

Suir manufactures both finished oral solid dosage forms and bulk beta-lactam antibiotics.

Saneca bought Suir from Mutares AG last June​, citing the deal as an opportunity to add finished dose manufacturing capabilities to its core active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) production business.

According to publicly available information, Suir’s customers include New Jersey, US-based Dava Pharmaceuticals​, for which it produced penicillin using APIs supplied by Novartis’ Sandoz division.

Financial​  

The Irish Times reports that Suir went into liquidation after Saneca decided it was no longer willing to fund the firm, although neither firm responded to a request for more information.

Suir has struggled for the past few years. In May 2014, Ireland’s Labour Court backed Suir management’s proposals to cut employee pay and working hours​ in the face of mounting losses.

According to the document, Suir executives predicted the firm would lose more than €1.8m in 2014 and said savings in the region of €1.1m would be needed in 2015 in "order to remain trading​."

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