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GSK comms head leaves to join AZ

GSK's vice-president for UK corporate affairs and EU communications is leaving to join AstraZeneca as global head of media relations

Neil McCrae, GlaxoSmithKline's (GSK) vice-president for UK corporate affairs and EU communications, is leaving to join AstraZeneca (AZ) as global head of media relations.

McCrae will leave at the beginning of 2008 after working for GSK for 11 years and will report to vice-president for group corporate communications, Caroline Hempstead. According to AZ, the position was created during the restructuring of the corporate affairs department at the company.

McCrae will be responsible for managing the group press office and building relationships with business and international media in London.

According to PR Week, McCrae's departure follows that of GSK's senior external communications manager, David Daley, who left to join The Health Protection Agency in the middle of November. Daley managed a team of five-strong team led by head of external communications Kate Hewer, who returned from maternity leave.

GSK has warned of job losses and has initiated cost-cutting measures to counter the falling sales experienced by its flagship diabetes drug, Avandia, as a result of cardiac safety warnings published in a US medical journal.

This week, GSK announced it would be shedding jobs from its US operations centre and a manufacturing site in North Carolina.

30th November 2007

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