The San Jose Mercury News reported this weekend that Swiss pharma giant Roche, just a day after finalizing a deal to buy South San Francisco-based Genentech, will close its Palo Alto research facility and lay off 500 employees.

This is perhaps a good sign for the 500 employees in Oceanside who used to work for Genentech, but as of last week work for Roche. While it shuttered the Palo Alto plant, which was a Roche facility, it left Genentech’s operations unscathed.

This might be evidence that a scenario offered by the San Francisco Business Times in September, in which the Roche operations will suffer more cuts than Genentech operations, has some validity. Here is the scenario, via the blog FierceBiotech:

“Roche is not disclosing the exact number of jobs that would shift between Palo Alto, South San Francisco and New Jersey. This much, however, is sure: South San Francisco will gain hundreds of jobs, New Jersey will lose hundreds and the Palo Alto operations that employed 3,000 people before Roche took control likely will be shuttered,” notes the Business Times.


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