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Jimenez new Novartis CEO

Joe Jimenez has been named as the new CEO of Swiss drug giants, Novartis, replacing Dr Daniel Vasella

Joe Jimenez has been named as the new CEO of Swiss drug giants, Novartis, replacing Dr Daniel Vasella.

Jimenez, currently head of the pharmaceuticals division at Novartis will take over on February 1, three years after joining Novartis from H.J. Heinz Company.

He will succeed Vasella who has spent 14 years in the CEO role in addition to 11 as chairman. Vasella will continue in the role of chair, concentrating on strategic priorities overseeing a simplified organisational structure.

The decision comes after a year which saw Novartis achieve 30 new approvals, as well as increasing its net sales by 11% and having its core net income rise by 8% to $10.3bn.

 

Joe Jimenez
Joe Jimenez - new CEO of Novartis

 

Novartis said in a statement: "The Board has selected Joe Jimenez with complete trust in his global leadership capabilities, based on his outstanding performance track record, broad international business experience and his ability to provide direction, align and engage people."

Vasella also commented on the decision: "After 14 years as CEO it is the right time to complete the carefully planned CEO succession process, which started over a year ago. The Board appointed Joe Jimenez, currently division head of our pharmaceutical business as new CEO and also agreed to de-layer and simplify the top leadership structure.

"The international experience in pharmaceuticals and consumer businesses together with an excellent track record destine Joe Jimenez to lead Novartis into a next phase of expansion and growth. I am convinced 2010 will be a year of significant progress."

The new structure will see the Novartis executive committee reduced from 12 to nine, with the loss of chief operating officer, head of corporate affairs and head group quality/technical operations.

Leaving in this restructuring are Joerg Reinhardt, Andreas Rummelt and Thomas Wellauer, who, according to a statement by the company, "have decided to pursue their careers outside of Novartis."

Jimenez's role as head of pharmaceuticals will be taken over by current head of oncology, David Epstein.

In a separate appointment, Jon Symonds will become CFO of Novartis, taking over from Raymund Breu, who retires on March 31 having reached the mandatory retirement age.

26th January 2010

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