This is the workforce Takeda is getting in Shire

1 week ago by James Mattone in Facts
iStock: cogal

The pharmaceutical mega-deal that sees Takeda Pharmaceuticals ($TYO:4502) acquiring Shire ($NASDAQ:SHPG) for about $59 billion was just approved by Takeda's shareholders, paving the way for the Japan-based company to become a major stakeholder in the industry. This acquisition will give Takeda some big-name drugs — Vyvanse, Lialda, and Adderall XR to name a few — as well as a wide selection of rare disease drugs that should up its market share.

Not too surprisingly, while Shire was gearing up for the merger, its hiring pace slowed down.

As for employees that already have — or had — jobs at Shire, the merger comes at a time where employee tensions appear to be high.

On the employer reviewer website Glassdoor, employee reviews of Shire have continued a decline that we first saw six months ago

With the merger on the horizon, employees are feeling skeptical of the business outlook for Shire — and soon by extension Takeda — on Glassdoor, echoing concerns from analysts who feel Takeda's credit rating will be severly downgraded due to the amount of incoming debt.

Management is very ineffective. There is absolutely no support to employees from management when issues arise. Pushed from group to group with no accountability or resolution. — Anonymous Current Employee in now-removed Glassdoor review.

When we last looked at the company's business outlook, it sat at 27%. Now, it's down below 23%, meaning 3 out of every 4 employees who recently reviewed the company anonymously don't feel positive about the company's outlook in six month's time.

Another slide came with Shire CEO Flemming Ørnskov's approval rating. Half a year ago when merger talks were getting warmer, his rating was 27%. Now, he sits back at his 18-month low of 26%.

One possible reason for all the overall negative reviews can be seen in the actual Glassdoor reviews themselves, which all share a common theme: poor management.

Another review since removed from the service, but still tracked in our database, had similar gripes. However, this current employee, who remained anonymous, used a bit stronger language to describe management:

"Management is very ineffective. There is absolutely no support to employees from management when issues arise. Pushed from group to group with no accountability or resolution."

Maybe Takeda will be hiring new managers after the merger comes through, but one thing is for certain: in acquiring the company that makes plenty of could-be profitable drugs, it could get more debt and unhappy employees than it bargained for.

James Mattone

James is a recent Boston University graduate who calls the world of esports and video games his home. As a young journalist, he has already covered two E3 expos a...

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