Merck & Co Leave Whitehouse Station Headquarters

Merck & Co announced yesterday that they are relocating their worldwide headquarters from Whitehouse Station, New Jersey to their existing offices in Summit, New Jersey as part of their cost-cutting programme.

The office in Summit, New Jersey currently contains research, manufacturing, animal health and consumer care operations and houses 1,800 employees.  The organisation will shut their current headquarters, and the move is projected to start in 2014 and be finalised in mid-2015.

Approximately 2,000 employees who are currently located at Whitehouse Station, which has been Merck’s headquarters since 1992, will relocate to their site in Summit or to other offices located within New Jersey, at Branchburg and Cokesbury.

Summit was chosen as the new HQ as it is “a strategic, multi-use site with excess work-space capacity and is adjacent to major transportation hubs and desirable urban centres,” Merck commented.

The relocation comes as the business continues their reorganisation programme which was extended last August when Merck revealed plans to cut 12-13,000 jobs by the end of 2015, roughly 12%-13% of their staff.

Kenneth Frazier, Merck’s chief executive, noted that the relocation “will help us achieve our future vision, reduce the size of our operating footprint and increase agility as we adapt to our changing business environment.”

Vaxxas Vaccine Partnership

Meanwhile, Merck have also partnered with Australia’s Vaxxas to evaluate Vaxxas’ Nanopatch platform that delivers vaccines to the immunological cells immediately below the skin surface.

Financial details have not been divulged but Merck will pay an upfront fee and provide backing to conduct research evaluating Nanopatch for one of the company’s vaccine candidates.  Vaxxas will be entitled to receive further payments if Merck exercises their option to use the platform for vaccines in up to two additional fields.

Vaxxas has also provided Merck with an exclusive license for the Nanopatch platform for commercial production of an unidentified vaccine.  The technology comprises of an array of thousands of vaccine-coated microprojections that perforate the skin, and Vaxxas hopes their needle-free approach will transform the way vaccines are given.


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