Telecom giant Nokia announced as many as 14,000, or roughly 16% of its workforce, will be laid off, warning the "timing of the market recovery is uncertain" after weaker demand for 5G equipment.
Bloomberg data shows Nokia employs 86,000 people. The telecom said a "reset" is needed "to reduce its cost base and increase operational efficiency while protecting its R&D capacity and commitment to technology leadership." It plans to lower its costs by between 800 million euros and 1.2 billion euros by the end of 2026, adding, "This represents a 10–15% reduction in personnel expenses."
The massive headcount reduction comes after Nokia reported third-quarter net sales plunged 20% year-on-year to 4.98 billion euros. Profits crashed by as much as 69% year-on-year to 133 million euros from July through September, compared with last year.
"In the face of a challenging market environment, we will reduce our cost base to protect our profitability," Nokia's chief executive, Pekka Lundmark, said in a video statement.
Lundmark said it's "impossible to say" how long the downturn in network markets will last, adding on a long-term basis, investments in 5G will be "necessary" to handle surging data traffic due to artificial intelligence and cloud computing.
He did not rule out the possibility of "structural moves" beyond cost-cutting measures. He emphasized that even when considering substantial headcount reductions, Nokia's primary goal remains safeguarding its ability to maintain strong R&D output.
The CEO acknowledged that the macroeconomic environment will play a significant role in 2024. However, he stated it was too early to provide specific guidance and cautioned against assuming the company would receive support from the market.
Regarding regional insights, the CEO observed a notable slowdown in India in the second half, suggesting a normalization trend compared to the year's first half.
After earnings, Lundmark told Bloomberg, "Operators have found it challenging to monetize their 5G investments."
Growth in the India market "is no anymore able to compensate fully for what we are losing in North America," Lundmark said. "But what comes down, will go back up again and we do not know what the timing is. That's why we are taking action."
Shares of Nokia in Europe fell 3.5%, nearing lows not seen since the early days of Covid.
Nokia isn't the only Western telecom reducing its workforce: Sweden's Ericsson announced plans to reduce its headcount by 8,500 earlier this year. The slowing global economy and elevated inflation have pressured telecoms.
On Wednesday, Ericsson CEO Borje Ekholm warned: "Underlying uncertainty impacting" its mobile networks will last into 2024, causing doubts over recovery for telecommunications equipment makers.
Co-founded by David Baker, Vilya rings in a permanent CEO; Allogene names Eric Schmidt’s CFO successor
→ Ex-Olema Oncology chief Cyrus Harmon has resurfaced as CEO of Vilya, a Seattle-based macrocycle biotech from David Baker’s lab that…
→ Ex-Olema Oncology chief Cyrus Harmon has resurfaced as CEO of Vilya, a Seattle-based macrocycle biotech from David Baker’s lab that raised a $50 million Series A last August. Harmon co-founded Olema in 2007 and he moved into the role of chief technology officer when Sean Bohen was hired as CEO three years ago. He then shifted to chief research officer until Olema restructured in March and laid off about 25% of its staff. CBO Kinney Horn joined Harmon on the chopping block, although Harmon is still on Olema’s board of directors. Former Bristol Myers Squibb exec Nick Meanwell and Arrakis chief innovation officer Jennifer Petter are part of Vilya’s scientific advisory board.
→ Off-the-shelf cell therapy specialist Allogene has found a CFO. Former Goldman Sachs managing director Geoffrey Parker spent six years at Tricida and was elevated to COO, CFO and EVP in February 2021. Parker succeeds Eric Schmidt, who left Allogene this summer to become a biotech analyst for Cantor Fitzgerald and spoke with Lei Lei Wu as he prepared to dive in to his new gig. Allogene began the year by hiring R&D chief Zachary Roberts and has since picked up chief technical officer Tim Moore and general counsel Earl Douglas.
→ Tom Anderson is out as CEO of Syncona-backed gene therapy maker SwanBio, but he’ll be a strategic advisor and keep his seat on a board that will now be chaired by ex-Novartis medical chief and current Syncona executive partner John Tsai. SwanBio has also recruited Topher Brooke as COO after he spent a year in the same role at Aytu BioPharma. Brooke is the former head of AstraZeneca’s diabetes business unit in North America and co-founded Rumpus Therapeutics, a pediatric disease biotech that was sold to Aytu in 2021. Tsai was just named CEO at another Syncona company, Forcefield Therapeutics, in late September.
→ AstraZeneca and Takeda alum Richard Daly will replace Patrick McEnany as CEO of Catalyst Pharmaceuticals on Jan. 1, while McEnany will remain chairman of the board. Daly last appeared in this space in January 2022, when he became president of CARsgen’s US subsidiary, CARsgen Therapeutics Corporation. He’s also been COO at BeyondSpring and a board member at Catalyst since 2015. Catalyst previously announced in July that McEnany would step down as chief executive.
→ Michael Rossi will take over as president and CEO of Y-mAbs, and once Rossi starts running the biotech on Nov. 6, founder and interim chief Thomas Gad is slated to be vice chairman and CBO. Rossi was general manager of the US business for Novartis’ radiopharma company Advanced Accelerator Applications, and he’s also had a 12-year career with GE Healthcare. Y-mAbs has had a checkered regulatory past, receiving a refusal to file letter for its pediatric neuroblastoma treatment omburtamab in October 2020 and scoring an accelerated approval for another neuroblastoma drug, naxitamab, several weeks later. Y-mAbs tried again with omburtamab in 2022, but an adcomm voted unanimously against it and the FDA agreed with the assessment.
→ Manmeet Soni is reuniting with Bob Duggan as COO of Summit Therapeutics, which formed an alliance with Akeso Therapeutics on the bispecific antibody ivonescimab in December. Soni was CFO and treasurer at Pharmacyclics while Duggan was CEO, and just completed a four-year run at Reata Pharmaceuticals, the Texas biotech that Biogen acquired for $7.3 billion. The ex-Alnylam CFO started out as finance chief at Reata and added the COO post in June 2020 before his promotion to president in February 2022.
Summit has also appointed Jack West from City of Hope as VP of clinical development “focused on lung cancer,” and it has also promoted the following execs: Allen Yang (CMO), Dave Gancarz (chief business & strategy officer), Urte Gayko (chief regulatory, quality, & pharmacovigilance officer), and Fong Clow (chief biometrics officer). Duggan shares CEO duties at Summit with president Maky Zanganeh.
→ Roivant subsidiary Covant Therapeutics has named Vincent Hennemand as CEO. Hennemand takes over the reins after a gig as COO at Intergalactic Therapeutics, which laid off all employees in August. Prior to Intergalactic, Hennemand was with Bain, Sanofi and PureTech Health. At Sanofi, Hennemand was chief of staff for Elias Zerhouni, while his tenure at PureTech included a role as SVP of corporate strategy and business development.
→ Belgium’s etherna has locked Bernard Sagaert into the role of CEO after leading the company in an interim capacity for the past year. Sagaert joined etherna in 2017 after roles at Mylan and Sterigenics. Alongside Sagaert’s appointment, ex-Bayer and Thermo Fisher CEO Marijn Dekkers — the founder and chairman of Novalis Capital Partners — has been named chairman of the board.
→ “Ports” of call: Third Rock-backed CARGO Therapeutics has named Ginna Laport as CMO after hiring chief scientist Michael Ports in September. Laport had been VP of clinical development, global head of the non-Hodgkin lymphoma/chronic lymphocytic leukemia franchise at Genentech since January 2020, and she’s the ex-medical chief at Tempest Therapeutics. CARGO hauled in $200 million in one of the largest Series A rounds in biotech this year.
→ Following a Phase III whiff with its IgA nephropathy drug narsoplimab, Omeros has brought in Andreas Grauer as CMO. Grauer tackled this same role at Federation Bio and Corcept Therapeutics, and he spent a decade in global development at Amgen.
→ Weston Miller will become CMO at Amber Salzman’s latest play, Epic Bio, on Oct. 23. Miller had been VP of clinical development at Graphite Bio, which conceded defeat with its sickle cell program in February and eliminated about half of its workforce. He’s also worked in clinical development for Astellas Gene Therapies and Sangamo. After Flagship’s Ohana Biosciences closed in 2021, Salzman is now CEO of Epic, an epigenetic editing startup that racked up a $55 million Series A last year.
→ AI drug discovery and development company Exscientia has recruited Parker Moss as EVP, corporate development, starting in January. Moss makes his way to the Oxford-based company from Genomics England, where he served as chief partnerships officer. Moss previously served as an entrepreneur-in-residence at F-Prime and Eight Roads and was part of the executive team at Owkin. Exscientia CEO Andrew Hopkins spoke to Andrew Dunn about the trouble AI-derived drugs are having: “We’ve also now realized if we want to change the probability of success in the clinic, it’s not just better molecules,” he said. “We also need better translational models.”
→ Peanut patch developer DBV Technologies has enlisted Sanofi vet Virginie Boucinha as CFO. Boucinha comes to DBV from another French company, Pierre Fabre, where she was the group performance director since February 2022. At Sanofi, she held such leadership roles as CFO for India and South Asia (2012-15), chief of staff to the group CEO (2015-18) and head of the Global Transformation Office (2018-21).
→ Now run by ex-Seagen CEO Clay Siegall after the merger with Morphimmune, Immunome has pegged Bob Lechleider as CMO. Lechleieder worked with Siegall as SVP of clinical development at Seagen from 2016-20, and the MacroGenics vet has spent the last three years as CMO of OncoResponse.
→ Three new execs have made their way to Antiva Biosciences, the Redwood City, CA-based biotech that nabbed a $53 million Series E this spring: Elaine Chien (CMO) had been promoted to VP, clinical development and medical safety during her three years at Mirum Pharmaceuticals; Susan Wilson (VP of project management and strategic initiatives) has previously served as VP, program, portfolio and alliance management for Revolution Medicines; and Rajashree Joshi-Hangal (VP of technical operations) is an Astex Pharmaceuticals vet who was in charge of CMC, regulatory affairs at Myovant Sciences. Antiva’s ABI-2280 is in Phase II for high-grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasias, or precancerous cervical lesions.
→ Ronan O’Brien has joined Lyra Therapeutics as chief legal officer. O’Brien just had a five-year stint with Pear Therapeutics and was promoted to general counsel, chief compliance officer & secretary in January 2022. Lyra’s chronic rhinosinusitis drug LYR-220 hit the primary endpoint in a Phase II trial last month.
→ Touting positive Phase IIa data a few weeks ago for its primary sclerosing cholangitis drug bexotegrast —with more results on the way — Pliant Therapeutics has selected Mishima Gerhart as chief regulatory officer. Gerhart recently served as chief regulatory officer and head of quality at Taysha Gene Therapies, and she has additional regulatory experience with such pharma giants as Pfizer, AbbVie and Sanofi.
→ Japanese biotech RegCell has handed the CEO reins to Michael McCullar. McCullar joins the Osaka-based company from a CEO stint at OnQuality Pharmaceuticals. Before that, McCullar was COO of Tolera Pharmaceuticals and SVP of business development at Astex Pharmaceuticals.
→ Palo Alto, CA-based Genascence has brought aboard Lachy McLean as CMO. McLean has prior chief medical experience from his time at Novome, and he has previously served in roles at AstraZeneca, Merck, Genentech, Takeda and Travere.
→ Cognito Therapeutics has reeled in Greg Weaver as CFO. Not his first time in the position, Weaver was CFO at Atossa Therapeutics, BioIntelliSense, atai Life Sciences and Eloxx Pharmaceuticals.
→ The cancer genomics experts at Personalis have appointed Deepshikha Bhandari as SVP, regulatory, quality and clinical compliance. Bhandari was the VP of regulatory affairs at Grail and Roche Diagnostics.
→ CRO Novotech has enlisted Rick Farris as managing director for North America and David Ng as global VP for biometrics and data management. Farris was most recently VP operations at IQVIA, while Ng was VP of biometrics at WuXi Clinical, a subsidiary of WuXi AppTec.
→ Cellectar Biosciences has rolled out the welcome mat for two new team members with the appointments of William Yoon as VP, medical affairs and Aaditya Nanduri as VP, business strategy and analytics. Yoon joins the Florham Park, NJ-based biotech after a gig at ImmunoGen and a nearly 20-year stint with Novartis. Meanwhile, Nanduri hops aboard after stints at BeiGene, Celgene and Ernst & Young.
→ It’s been a while since we’ve wheeled out the Maraganore Meter in Peer Review, but ex-Alnylam CEO John Maraganore is back with another scientific advisory board appointment, this time at Totus Medicines. Lewis Cantley and UCSF’s Kevan Shokat are also on the SAB at Totus, which is going after PI3Kα first with its lead candidate TOS-358.
→ Resilience president, COO and CFO Sandy Mahatme has punched his ticket to the board of directors at CRISPR Therapeutics, which includes gene therapy luminary Kathy High, SR One’s Simeon George and Lassen Therapeutics CEO Maria Fardis. Mahatme has a seat on the board at Idorsia and spent nearly eight years as Sarepta’s CFO and CBO.
→ Ex-Mirati CEO David Meek leads a trio of new board members at radiopharma player Fusion Pharmaceuticals. He’s joined by Teresa Bitetti, the president of Takeda’s global oncology business unit, and Day One Biopharmaceuticals CEO Jeremy Bender.
→ Olema Oncology has made room for ex-PACT Pharma CEO Scott Garland on the board of directors. Garland, who’s also been president and CEO of Portola, has board seats at Day One Biopharmaceuticals and ALX Oncology.
→ The board of directors at Bicara Therapeutics has grown to nine members with the additions of Kate Haviland and Scott Robertson. Haviland replaced Jeff Albers as CEO of Blueprint Medicines in April 2022, and Robertson is the ex-chief business and financial officer at DICE Therapeutics, the immunology biotech that Eli Lilly snapped up this summer for $2.4 billion.
→ Illumina once had designs on buying PacBio, which is gaining on the DNA sequencing giant and has added ex-Moderna and Amgen CFO David Meline to the board of directors. Meline will also be a board member at HP starting Nov. 1.treatment fda therapy dna india
Japanese yen stays adrift, core CPI falls below 3%
Japanese core CPI falls below 3% Fed’s Powell says inflation too high, economy too strong The Japanese yen is slightly lower on Friday. In the European…
- Japanese core CPI falls below 3%
- Fed’s Powell says inflation too high, economy too strong
The Japanese yen is slightly lower on Friday. In the European session, USD/JPY is trading at 149.96, up 0.12%. The yen has shown little movement this week and continues to hover just shy of the symbolic 150 level. In early October, the yen breached 150 and then spiked sharply lower. It’s looking very likely that the yen will again breach 150 shortly.
Japan’s core inflation eases below 3%
Japanese core CPI, which excludes fresh food, slowed to 2.8% y/y in September, versus 3.1% in August but above the market consensus of 2.7%. The print fell below the 3% level for the first time since August 2022 but has now exceeded the Bank of Japan’s 2% target for 18 straight months. The “core-core” rate, which excludes fresh food and energy prices and is considered by the BoJ a better gauge of inflation trends, dropped from 4.3% to 4.2% in September, higher than the market consensus of 4.1%.
Inflation has been slowly easing, but the downtrend faces some possible headwinds. The yen continues to lose ground and tensions in the Middle East have raised fears that oil prices could hit $100 or higher. If oil prices rise or the yen continues to decline, the result will be higher inflation.
How will the Bank of Japan react to potential oil inflation and the weakening yen? The central bank holds a two-day meeting ending on October 31st and may have to revise its quarterly inflation and growth forecasts. The markets are on alert for the BoJ to phase out its massive stimulus but BoJ policy makers haven’t shown signs of shifting policy.
In the US, it’s a very light data calendar, highlighted by a speech from FOMC member Patrick Harker. On Thursday, Fed Chair Jerome Powell said that inflation was still too high and that growth would need to slow if inflation is to fall to the 2% target. Powell noted that further hikes might not be needed, as the rise in Treasury yields could help dampen growth and lower inflation.
- 150.22 is a weak resistance line, followed by resistance at 150.86.
- 149.19 and 148.55 are providing support
Watch Live: Biden Delivers Prime-Time Oval Office Address On Israel, Ukraine
Watch Live: Biden Delivers Prime-Time Oval Office Address On Israel, Ukraine
Update (1940ET) – When President Biden delivers the 2nd Oval…
Update (1940ET) - When President Biden delivers the 2nd Oval Office address of his presidency, he is expected to make a supplemental spending request to Congress that will include:
$14 billion for Israel
$60 billion for Ukraine
$10 billion for humanitarian aid
$7 billion for Indo-Pacific
$14 billion for border security
We were off by $5 billion...
Sorry, $105 billion.— zerohedge (@zerohedge) October 19, 2023
Biden's spending request will include:
$14 billion for Israel
$60 billion for Ukraine
$10 billion for humanitarian aid
$7 billion for Indo-Pacific
$14 billion for border security https://t.co/Oa2M9qcc9a
* * *
Following a trip to Israel that did little to soothe worries of broadening conflict in the region, President Biden will address the American people from the Oval Office at 8 pm ET Thursday night, delivering a speech intended to foster Congressional support for throwing more money at not only Israel but also Ukraine.
“Tomorrow, President Biden will address the nation to discuss our response to Hamas’ terrorist attacks against Israel and Russia’s ongoing brutal war against Ukraine,” said White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre in a statement.
Support for funding the West's proxy war against Russia in Ukraine has been sagging, particularly in the wake of a vaunted Ukraine counteroffensive that has resulted in a net loss of territory. Last month, an amendment that would prohibit any more military aid to Ukraine won the support of 93 Republicans...and zero Democrats. That was a gain of 23 votes from a similar resolution offered in July.
As the 2007-08 financial crisis erupted, then-White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel famously said, "You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that is an opportunity to do things that you think you could not do before.”
That spirit will be evident in Biden's prime time address: The Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel gives the White House and the war state an opportunity to tie Ukraine aid to security assistance for Israel -- something few members of Congress will dare oppose, and especially Republicans.
Further sweetening the deal for Ukraine-weary Republicans, Biden will also ask for money for Taiwan and the US-Mexico border, the New York Times reports. He's expected to ask for a total of $100 billion, about $60 billion of which would go to Ukraine, compared to $10 billion for Israel. The package will be positioned as an allocation meant to last a year, deferring the need for additional requests from Congress.
The US government has poured more than $75 billion into Ukraine since Russia invaded Ukraine in January 2021. As the outlays have mounted, so too has the technological complexity of the weapons. Just last weekend, Ukraine fired ATACMS missiles at Russian forces for the first time.
In Tel Aviv, Biden said he would request an "unprecedented support package for Israel's defense." Though Israel is among the world's richest countries, it already receives about $3.3 billion in annual assistance from the US government -- even as America's total public debt has surged past $33 trillion, to say nothing of unfunded liabilities related to entitlement programs.
Oval Office addresses are relatively rare. In March 2020, Donald Trump detailed his administration's plans to counter the Covid-19 pandemic. Obama spoke in 2015 following the Islamic extremist mass shooting in San Bernardino, and in 2010 after the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. George W. Bush memorably used the Oval Office to address the country on 9/11.
Much as Bush lied to Americans by telling them al Qaeda attacked them because of their "freedom," expect Biden to tell his audience that military and financial aid to Israel keeps Americans safe -- when in fact that support is one of the principal motivators of terrorism against US civilians.
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