Changing its stance just after a day, Biopharmaceutical giant Sanofi announced to quit their business and find a partner to transfer its stake in Bangladesh.
Under the circumstances, the company employees have demanded compensation alleging that Sanofi is defrauding its workforce by planning to sell its shares.
Employees from the factory, head office, marketing and sales team have launched a movement protesting the Sanofi move. As part of the protest, employees held a work abstention on Wednesday at the company's head office in Dhaka.
Sanjib Chakrabarty, secretary general of Sanofi Employee Welfare Association said. "We have no issues with the Sanofi decision to sell its shares to a Bangladeshi partner. However, the company is not paying us any compensation before making such a drastic move.
"Sanofi is defrauding us. We have launched a movement to realize our demands and we will continue until the company compensates us properly."
"The pharma giant is trying to convince its employees that the company buying Sanofi's stake will produce products of similar standard. We are worried that a local owner will not be able to provide the staff with facilities available to a multinational company's workforce," he added.
Sanjib Chakrabarty further expressed his concerns that the local owner will not be able to maintain the existing workforce for more than over a year, despite getting assurances from the managing director of Sanofi.
On Thursday, the protesting employees plan to organize a human chain on the road in front of the Sanofi head office.
According to a statement issued by Sanofi on Wednesday, the company intends to find a partner to transfer its stake in Sanofi Bangladesh Ltd.
"We believe that in Bangladesh we are not necessarily in the best position to maximize business opportunities. Sanofi aims to identify a trustworthy organisation that will commit to carry on our legacy by way of ethical and scientific promotion of the Sanofi portfolio in the long term, for the benefit of both, our patients and employees," the statement read.
The Business Standard published a report on October 14 titled "Five local companies willing to buy Sanofi's share." The report mentioned that the pharma company wants to leave Bangladesh and sell its shares to a local company.
When contacted the same day, a press release issued by the company read, "We [Sanofi Bangladesh Ltd] do not want to comment based on rumours."