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Biopharm 2009 Employment in Review

February 15

In 2009, the biopharmaceutical sector was affected by a lack of capital and tighter budgets due to the recession, megamergers, drug safety problems, patent expirations and dwindling pipelines. As always following any merger, redundant functions were eliminated to streamline operations. Despite these challenges, the salaries of biopharmaceutical professionals increased in 2009, BioPharm International's fourth annual salary survey shows.

The survey shows that the mean industry salary in 2009 was $96,742 in the United States, slightly higher than the $89,760 figure of 2008, and €68,711 in Europe (approximately $99,859) compared to €62,721 ($85,927) last year. In the US, 39 percent of respondents earn more than $100,000 and 25 percent earn between $75,000 and $100,000. The salary breakdown among European respondents was similar. The US biotech jobs with the highest salaries included corporate management, plant engineering and design, and regulatory affairs.

When respondents were asked how the economic downturn affected them, some said that the slow economy had a "minimal impact" or "no effect" on their company. Several cited "downsizing" and "reduction in budgets" as the major effects, but many more cited "a focus on cost savings," "more work with fewer resources" and "hiring freezes" as the primary effects.

In 2009, 68 percent of respondents said they feel "secure," "very secure," or "extremely secure" in their current jobs, down slightly from last year's figure of 71 percent.

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