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Pfizer CEO Kindler steps down

Jeffrey Kindler, CEO at Pfizer, has stepped down to be succeeded by current head of global biopharmaceutical operations, Ian Read

Jeffrey Kindler, CEO at Pfizer, has stepped down. He will be succeeded by the company's current head of global biopharmaceutical operations, Ian Read.

Aged 55, Kindler's leaving the company comes more than a year after Pfizer completed the $67bn acquisition of Wyeth. Kinder, who has been CEO for five years, says that he is leaving to "recharge my batteries".

Pfizer's board lead independent director, Constance J Horner said: "In 2006, Jeff Kindler took on the challenge of transforming Pfizer in the face of enormous changes in the global healthcare marketplace and significant patent expirations of major products, including Lipitor. Acting with the highest level of ethics and professionalism, he moved aggressively to drive change at the company, including putting new, more focused and agile business units in place, building and enhancing world-class compliance systems, recruiting talented new leaders, and refocusing and streamlining operations in every part of the world.

"He also led the acquisition of Wyeth, which brought the company valuable in-line and pipeline products and capabilities in attractive growth areas, including vaccines and biologics. Due to the efforts of Jeff, the executive leadership team and Pfizer's talented employees around the world, the company is now a stronger, more diversified and more focused company."

Read joined Pfizer in 1978 and has led Pfizer's worldwide pharmaceutical business since 2006. The business includes primary care, speciality care, oncology, established products emerging markets and accounts for about 85 per cent of Pfizer's annual revenue. He has been responsible for more than 40,000 employees.

Horner said: "In the last four years as president of Pfizer's pharmaceutical businesses, Ian has redefined our go to market approach with the creation of global business units and has brought to product development a focus and commitment to advance only medicines that have clear value to our customers. Today's business leaders need to understand global markets, drive change and innovation, and move quickly to adapt to competitive pressures. Ian's track record throughout his career has demonstrated these exact strengths."

6th December 2010


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