Pfizer to acquire Wyeth in $68B deal; cut 8,000 jobs

Pfizer Inc. is buying rival drug company Wyeth in a $68 billion deal, the companies said Monday.

pfizer wyeth cut jobs

The world’s largest pharmaceutical firm plans to pay $50.19 per share for Wyeth, in a part cash/part stock transaction and the boards of directors of both companies have approved the deal.

Pfizer also announced it would cut more than 8,000 jobs as it prepares for an expected revenue crash when its cholesterol drug Lipitor loses patent protection in 2011.

“It will be done in a methodical way,” Pfizer spokesman Ray Kerins said. “We will continue to look at the staffing needs of the company and make decisions based on those needs.”

Meanwhile, U.S. stocks rose for a second day after Pfizer agreed to acquire Wyeth.

The takeover is the largest drug deal since Glaxo Wellcome‘s tie-up with SmithKline Beecham in 2000.