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Old 15.08.2011, 12:02
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Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

Hi there,

We are planning on working in Geneva and living in France next year. So we are starting to suss out jobs etc now.

My husband in from France, I am Irish but I don't speak French, well not well enough to be able to work with it. One day!

So I am going to be looking for an English speaking job in the pharmaceutical sector in and arond Geneva.

Does anyone know if there is many pharmaceutical companies there? I know other locations in Switzerland have more companies but we aren't keen on living in Switzerland just yet. More of a half step move if we move to France!
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Old 15.08.2011, 12:10
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

pharmaceutical companies in Geneva
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Old 15.08.2011, 12:15
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

Thanks for that but I actually have that exact browser window open on my pC as I type! Got there before ye!

I was just looking for some feedback maybe from people there if possible. All the googling in the world doesn't beat real-life feedback. We are planning on of course going over several times to research etc next year.
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Old 15.08.2011, 12:17
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

ok.. switching off wise-arse mode...

as you know then from Google there are many pharma. companies here... I'm not in that field but the major player here would be Serono ... with a brand spanking new HQ just down the road.
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Old 15.08.2011, 12:46
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

Eh yeah, didn't want to say you were being a smart-are or anything!!!

I am just nervous about the availability of English speaking biopharma jobs there. We want to stick to Geneva and live around Annecy. Well that's the initial plan, it may evolve.

THanks for you help!
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Old 15.08.2011, 12:53
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

Private industry here is going to be largely French speaking - I don't know what your area is but you may want to look also at WHO or the ICRC ( red cross )
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Old 15.08.2011, 13:23
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

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Eh yeah, didn't want to say you were being a smart-are or anything!!!

I am just nervous about the availability of English speaking biopharma jobs there. We want to stick to Geneva and live around Annecy. Well that's the initial plan, it may evolve.

THanks for you help!
Also commuting in from Annecy every day is likely to be pretty miserable, depending on where exactly you find a job. I would look for jobs first and then decide whether you want to live afterwards as getting through or round Geneva morning and evening is not fast.
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Old 15.08.2011, 13:33
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

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Private industry here is going to be largely French speaking - I don't know what your area is but you may want to look also at WHO or the ICRC ( red cross )
I'm not sure if it's true but whenever I've been approached by recruiters about jobs in Geneva, Neuchatel, Basel or Zurich they've always said that English is the language used in the labs, and companies will hire people with English only. That doesn't mean it's easy to communicate with everyone in the company, but you can get hired. I did speak directly with a couple smaller companies and English only wasn't a barrier for science based jobs, and I am now at a small company in Zurich despite not speaking any German.

Of course, if you're looking for a job in sales or clinical trials administration then language may be a barrier. But even in regulatory affairs and IP, English seems to be the main language.
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Old 15.08.2011, 13:44
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

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Also commuting in from Annecy every day is likely to be pretty miserable, depending on where exactly you find a job. I would look for jobs first and then decide whether you want to live afterwards as getting through or round Geneva morning and evening is not fast.
I've heard this alright as my husband has alot of friends there already. But as you said, jobs 1st then location for living.

titanturbo: thanks for that info re speaking English. I am a lab anaylst, testing so hopefully me having just english (I do speak ok german, did it for 7years in school) for now will suffice. Time will tell.
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Old 15.08.2011, 13:47
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

wedjul... you may want to look outside traditional pharma also...
a fragrance co... "Firmenich" has a large site here.. think its their HQ
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Old 15.08.2011, 13:50
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

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wedjul... you may want to look outside traditional pharma also...
a fragrance co... "Firmenich" has a large site here.. think its their HQ
Yep good idea. I need to find a good recruiting company or agency and work with them also. My husband is nagging me to do my profile in LinkedIn also. It will take me ages to do but I must do it.
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Old 17.08.2011, 19:05
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

I second the idea of looking outside Pharma. The usual problem for lab staff in Geneva is that they do not speak enough english, whereas many of their bosses have weak french. From that point of view, you're in a good position. I would suggest looking for a temping agency, as with maternity leave and so on, I think there must be plenty of short term placements.
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Old 18.08.2011, 10:09
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

If you are still interested in Pharma, Novartis has a fairly big place in Nyon. There are two new euro headquarters of biotech type firms in Nyon now as well, Edwards life science, and Shire. Just down the road, in Changins, is the swiss ag research facility. All of them doing that kind of research stuff.

However, I certainly would not commute to Nyon from Annecy, however if you want to live in France, Divonne is no more than a 5-10 minute drive.
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Old 18.08.2011, 10:26
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

There is Ferring as well in St.-Prex.

You could also look at both UNIL (Uni. Lausanne) and EPFL (Science school of Lausanne) as they both have lots of labs.
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Old 18.08.2011, 10:48
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

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You could also look at both UNIL (Uni. Lausanne) and EPFL (Science school of Lausanne) as they both have lots of labs.
And in Geneva there is the Centre Medical Universitaire, just next to the Hospital. Not as many opportunities as in Lausanne, but rather more convenient for Annecy...
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Old 19.08.2011, 12:51
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Re: Geneva - Pharmaceutical companies

Ah guys youa re great for the suggestions/recommendations. Really really appreciate it. Company names are great, thanks.

We are totally 100% open to where we live but would like to live in France as my husband is french and it's cheaper for rental etc.

We've talked about working in Nyon, Lausanne, loads of places. Work is obviously the main priorty.

I'm all about the networking these days! And I'm not a networker normally. A friend of my husband knows someone in the pharma sector in Geneve, brother-in-law has some more for me. So looking good...so far anyway.

Thanks again for the updates!!!! Merci.
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