Smith & Nephew Plc (Smith & Nephew) has decided to close down its 30-employee facility in San Antonio by the end of 2009. The San Antonio facility is the only remaining local operation of OsteoBiologics Inc (OsteoBiologics). Smith & Nephew will fold the San Antonio unit’s operations into its Mansfield, Massachusetts, facility, which is the Smith & Nephew Endoscopy division. The realignment process of the San Antonio operations will take about 10 months.

Presently, the company’s local site is situated at University Business Park on the northwest side of town.

Mario Hernandez, president of the San Antonio Economic Development Foundation, said he was unaware of the local closing. “Unfortunately, that’s the risk that we run when companies are acquired — the community can lose local employment,” Hernandez says. “We’re certainly sad to see that happen, but it is often part of the normal business events when the purchaser is based outside of the market. We certainly hope they’ll consider us in the future because we think San Antonio is stacked for medical technology companies like that.”

In July 2006, Smith & Nephew acquired OsteoBiologics Inc which developed bone replacement and soft-tissue repair products.

“In order to improve its competitive position in a global business environment and lower overall costs of production, the company will realign its operations,” a company statement says. “The realignment — which will take place over the next 10 months — will include: The transfer of the current core competencies of the company’s San Antonio facilities into its Mansfield, Massachusetts, facility.

These include manufacturing, planning, purchasing, shipping, receiving, manufacturing engineering, research and development, quality engineering and quality inspection.”

The company is offering severance packages to all 30 San Antonio employees, including outplacement support.

“These employees can apply for any role at Smith & Nephew,” Joe Metzer, company spokesman, said in an e-mail.