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Alcon cuts 2% of global workforce, including jobs in Fort Worth

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Eye care products company Alcon Inc. is cutting 2% of its global workforce, including jobs in Fort Worth, as part of a multiyear cost-cutting plan.

Alcon, now headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, declined to provide more detailed information about the number of jobs involved. At the end of last year, the company had 24,389 employees worldwide, according to a regulatory filing.

Two percent of that total would be about 480 workers.

“While we do not publicly disclose this information by site or city, overall there was a reduction of approximately 2% of our employees worldwide,” said spokesman Steven Smith in an emailed statement. “We also eliminated vacant roles where possible.”

Alcon has notified U.S. workers losing their jobs, the company said. Anonymous postings about the layoffs began appearing Thursday on the crowdsourced website

Last month, Alcon told investors that it would cut an additional $100 million from expenses through next year to improve efficiency. The new cuts are on top of plans announced in 2019 to reduce costs by up to $225 million.

The company’s sales of $6.5 billion through Sept. 30 are up nearly 7% from the same nine-month period last year. It expects to end the year with sales of $8.5 billion to $8.7 billion.

“Demand for our products was robust, and we saw particularly strong growth in our international markets,” CEO David J. Endicott said in an earnings announcement in November. “Looking forward, we will continue to focus on advancing our innovation engine, driving commercial execution and creating long-term shareholder value.”

In a later call with analysts, Endicott said the goal of the cost-cutting effort was “to drive speed and simplicity into the business. By allocating expenses more efficiently, we’ve created savings that were reinvested into new product development and launches.”

The company’s new efficiency measures include “reviewing management spends and layers,” he said.

Alcon makes a variety of surgical and vision care products, including consumer and prescription eye drops sold as Systane, Pataday, Simbrinza, Eysuvis and Inveltys. It just closed a $930 million deal with Aerie Pharmaceuticals Inc. that brings additional ophthalmic pharmaceuticals into its portfolio.

The company was founded in Fort Worth in 1945 by pharmacists Robert Alexander and William Conner, who sold eye care products. It grew through a series of acquisitions under ownership by Nestle and Novartis before spinning off on its own in 2019.

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