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Genzyme and Icahn reach proxy settlement

Genzyme has announced that it has reached an agreement with investor Carl Icahn to settle a proxy content

Genzyme has announced that it has reached an agreement with investor Carl Icahn to settle a proxy content.

As part of the agreement, Icahn will withdraw his slate of four nominees for Genzyme's board of directors and he will support the company's nominees. As a result, two of Icahn's supporters, Dr Steven Burakoff and Dr Eric Ende, will join Genzyme's board of directors immediately following the annual meeting of shareholders on June 16.

"Over the past year, we have made substantial progress in enacting operational and organisational changes to return to our historical path of sustainable growth," said Henri A Termeer, Genzyme's chairman and chief executive officer.

"This agreement provides a pragmatic and constructive solution that allows us to focus on continuing to strengthen and build the company to create value for our shareholders," he continued.

Dr Burakoff, is professor of medicine, haematology and medical oncology at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine and director of the Tisch Cancer Institute at the Mount Sinai Medical Center.

Dr Ende is a former biotechnology analyst with Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc.

Talking about the resolution, Icahn said: "I am always pleased when a proxy fight can be avoided. I believe Drs Burakoff and Ende will add significant medical and financial expertise to the Genzyme board."

Following these two appointments and an additional appointment of Dr Dennis M Fenton, former executive vice president of operations at Amgen, Genzyme's board will consist of 13 members.

10th June 2010

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