Another 280 Jobs To Leave MSD Ireland: County Wicklow, Rathdrum Plant Closing

MRK-Ireland-Rathdrum-2015 UPDATED | 03.09.13: An Irish reader noted in my comment box, yesterday, that this story implies that all the past cuts, and plans to sell the plants, were at a single facility in County Wicklow [I’ve now also updated my graphic at right — to make clear which Irish facility was affected this week, and the functions it performs (active pharmaceutical ingredients, or APIs, for various business lines)]. These errors are entirely my errors.

The actions I describe, as historical footnotes, below cross both the County Carlow. The commenter also notes that the Rathdrum closing announced this week was indeed “shocking” to the rank and file.

I did not mean to appear flip in my commentary; far from it — I meant to express empathy. I missed the mark. And so, for that as well, I apologize. The Irish facilities (involved locations, below) include MSD Dublin Road, Carlow Co., Carlow, Ireland; and MSD Ireland, Rathdrum, Co. Wicklow, Ireland. END, UPDATED PORTION.

The first 240 were let go in late March 2009, by legacy Schering-Plough — and in September 2010, the plant was put up for sale. . . so this is far from shocking news.

Just the same — this is very hard news for my distant cousins still there. Here is the Irish Times story, just now — but do go read it all:

. . . .Pharmaceutical company MSD is to close its facility in Rathdrum, Co Wicklow with a loss of 280 jobs.

The company, formerly Merck Sharp and Dohme, told staff this morning that it would cease operations at the plant by the end of 2015. However, no job losses are expected to happen before the end of next year.

The closure comes as part of an ongoing review of MSD’s worldwide manufacturing capabilities, which has resulted in sites around the world being sold, closed or consolidated.

“Rathdrum has been a significant manufacturing site since 1961 and has a long history of operational excellence,” site director John Smith,said. “The proposal to cease operations is not a reflection of the site’s performance or the highly skilled people working there. . . .”

Here’s to better times ahead, for ya’ mates. . . and most sincerely, my condolences — may the road rise to meet you, from here on.

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3 Responses

  1. Hi,
    Your report is a little misleading. The 240 let go in 2009 were located at the Schering Plough Animal Health site located in BRAY, Co. Wicklow.
    The Rathdrum site has never been allowed “run down ” as mentioned in the
    link. Rathdrum only recently installed a large scale hydrogenator and capital projects will continue at the site.
    To those of us working at the site, the news was shocking.

    • I hear you — thanks. Will fix my errors when I am free tomorrow by putting an update bug on the top of the post. . . .

      To be clear, here, I am on the side of the rank and file, in this matter. I did not mean in any way to seem uncaring to the plight of my distant cousins, across the pond from me. Quite the opposite. Job loss is always a traumatic event — even if given almost a year and three quarters to prepare for it. I feel for the families involved, truly.

      The actual cuts will begin next year — 2014 — with full wind-down complete by 2015.

      Namaste

  2. […] | 03.09.13: An Irish reader quite rightly pointed out, in my comment box, yesterday, that this story implies that all the past cuts, and plans to sell the plants, were at a […]

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