Thermo Fisher Scientific Cuts 230 Jobs in San Diego Due to Decline in COVID-19 Testing Demand

Logo of ThermoFisher Scientific on the side of a building that decided to do a major layoff

Thermo Fisher Scientific, a global leader in life sciences, is facing the difficult decision of laying off 230 employees in San Diego due to a combination of declining demand for COVID-19 testing products and economic uncertainty. The company, which has a presence in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries, has reported the job cuts at three of its genetic sciences facilities in San Diego and has filed a WARN notice with the state. The largest job reduction of 183 employees layoffs will take place at the company’s 6190 Cornerstone Court location, with a significant number of cuts in the manufacturing sector, as well as other technical positions such as engineers and scientists. There will also be 32 employees let go from the Kearny Villa Road facility and 15 employees from the Carroll Park Drive site.

Thermo Fisher Scientific Reports Decreased COVID-19 Revenue, Leads to Layoffs in Manufacturing Roles in San Diego

Thermo Fisher is headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts, and as of Dec. 31, 2021, the company had approximately 130,000 employees globally and over 2,200 employees in the San Diego area. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Thermo Fisher increased its presence in diagnostic testing by growing its manufacturing capacity through mergers and acquisitions of other companies, including the $450 million acquisition of local diagnostic test maker Mesa Biotech in San Diego. In July 2021, Thermo Fisher also opened a DNA manufacturing plant in Carlsbad, further expanding its footprint in the region.

However, the company is now facing declining demand for COVID-19 testing and is forced to make difficult layoffs. The facilities in Cornerstone Court and Carroll Park Drive are associated with COVID-19 test maker Mesa Biotech, according to property records. During the company’s recent earnings call with investors, Thermo Fisher executives discussed the impact of the decline in COVID-19 testing on the business. Although Thermo Fisher’s overall revenue has increased year over year, its 2022 COVID-19 testing revenue was down by 10% or $4.2 billion compared to the previous year, and its COVID-19 testing-related profits were also down.

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Layoffs at Thermo Fisher Scientific are a reflection of the challenging times faced by the life sciences industry, particularly in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The company’s decision to lay off workers is a difficult but necessary step to ensure its financial stability during these uncertain times.

Tech Companies Follow a Trend of 6% Workforce Layoffs in the New Year

The U.S. economy was performing well in January, but many tech companies started the year with layoffs, including Amazon, Microsoft, and Alphabet. Other tech companies, such as Okta, Spotify, HubSpot, NCC Group, and PayPal, also announced layoffs, with each company cutting between 5-7% of its workforce. This downsizing trend was expected due to the hiring spree during the pandemic and concerns about a possible recession. However, what’s puzzling is that many CEOs have chosen to lay off about 6% of their staff.

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