- Cook Medical has become the latest medical device maker to lay off staff, reducing its headcount by 500 to support its “long-term success,” the company said.
- The privately held producer of devices for minimally invasive procedures framed the 4% cut to its workforce as a necessary step after several years that “have brought significant change to our customers, our supply chain and the way we work.”
- Cook Medical’s action follows layoffs at Baxter, Illumina, Johnson & Johnson, Philips and a host of smaller medtech businesses in response to the macroeconomic situation and other changes.
Cook Medical president Pete Yonkman disclosed the layoffs in an email to employees that was published on the company’s website. In the email, Yonkman described the workforce reduction as “a very hard choice” that management needed to make to support the implementation of “a new five-year vision and strategic plan.” Cost control appears to be part of the first phase of the plan.
“The first few years of the mid-range plan have a significant focus on our disciplines of operational and financial excellence. An early focus on these two areas will ensure we’re able to invest significantly in the next phases of our product leadership strategy,” Yonkman wrote in the email.
Cook, a unit of the closely held Cook Group, based in Bloomington, Indiana, manufactures mainly minimally invasive surgical tools and devices. Cook Medical had about 11,000 employees and $2 billion in revenue in 2021, according to Medical Design and Outsourcing.
Yonkman told staff that no hourly manufacturing employees or hourly employees in distribution centers will be affected by the layoffs, reflecting the fact that demand for Cook Medical’s products “continues to grow,” and management wants to ensure the company has the capacity to meet it. The email lacked further details on the types of roles that will be affected.
The 500 Cook employees losing their jobs join thousands of other medtech workers who have been laid off over the past year. Philips has made deep cuts, laying off 10,000 people as it grapples with the fallout of its sleep and respiratory device recall, and Baxter, Illumina and J&J have also collectively eliminated thousands of positions.