Darmstadt, Germany, March 25, 2014 – Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, a leading company for innovative and top-quality high-tech products in the pharmaceutical and chemical sectors, today announced the promotion of three distinguished internal managers to head the Life Science Tools and Consumer Health divisions as well as its allergy business unit respectively as the company enters the growth phase of its transformation program “Fit for 2018.”
Udit Batra, who over the past two years has managed the turnaround at Consumer Health, will become President and Chief Executive Officer of the Life Science Tools division, succeeding Robert Yates. Yates, following the successful conclusion to fully integrate the company and the Life Science Tools Division into one leading life sciences division, has decided to leave the organization for a new professional opportunity outside of the company. Uta Kemmerich-Keil, currently Chief Executive Officer of Allergopharma and head of the global allergy business unit, will succeed Batra in his role as President and Chief Executive Officer of Consumer Health. With a long track record in the Group’s Finance and M&A functions, Kemmerich-Keil took over the helm of the allergy business unit at the end of 2012, restructured the business and gave it a new strategic direction. She will be replaced at Allergopharma by Marco Linari, last year was appointed commercial lead for the implementation of the Operating Model within EMD Millipore and Performance Materials. All changes will take effect May 15.
Separately, BelÚn Garijo, President and Chief Executive Officer of the biopharmaceuticals division, will take charge of the Research & Development organization ad interim. Annalisa Jenkins, who took over as Head of Global R&D in October 2013, has decided to leave the biopharmaceuticals division at the end of March. The search for a permanent leader of the R&D organization is currently underway.
“Over the past two years, our pharma and life science tools divisions have made tremendous progress in building strong and efficient platforms for future growth,” said Karl-Ludwig Kley, Chairman of the Executive Board of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. “Robert Yates and Annalisa Jenkins both played key roles in driving the change process in their respective areas of responsibility and I want to thank them personally for their contributions to our company. As we are now moving into the growth phase of ‘Fit for 2018,’ we are ensuring continuity and a clear focus on our customers with distinguished internal top executives who will relentlessly drive the growth initiatives that we’ve started. We are particularly proud to be able to assign roles with increasing responsibility to high-caliber internal leaders of the next generation to ensure we will deliver upon our objectives over the long term.’’
With all divisions in strong financial positions, the appointment of internal candidates will allow for smooth transitions with minimal disruptions and the timely migration to the new leaders.
At the Life Science Tools division, which is a leading supplier to the life science industry with more than 60,000 products, the focus has been on improving the division’s profitability by globalizing its product portfolio and reducing organizational complexity. The Billerica (US)-based division earlier this month reported a 4.6 percent increase in EBITDA pre one-time items to € 642.8 million for 2013, widening the sales margin to 24.5 percent. Its growth focus will be on driving market share growth in North America, Asia and Latin America as well as increase sales generated by new products. With a track record working for leading pharmaceutical companies, Udit Batra will bring a unique perspective into the needs and key drivers of the customers of the Life Science Tools division.
Consumer Health had a successful turnaround year in which the division improved its EBITDA pre one-time items by 8.5 percent to € 72.5 million and raised its sales margin to 15.2 percent. Merck, KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, earlier this month announced the transfer of the Neurobion and Floratil brands from the biopharmaceuticals division to Consumer Health, raising the division’s sales by more than 50 percent and increasing its emerging markets exposure to 51 percent from 28 percent. Uta Kemmerich-Keil will focus now on pushing ahead with the division’s growth agenda, particular in emerging markets of Latin America and Southeast Asia.
The biopharmaceuticals division has reorganized its R&D organization with a nimble and highly-experienced team of around 2,500 R&D experts in four hubs around the globe. Following the integration of its research and development functions, the company is committed to delivering on its R&D strategy aimed at providing high-quality science to clinical development with speed and efficiency to provide new therapies for unmet medical needs. The division will continue to deliver on its R&D priorities, focusing on progressing the pipeline of the biopharmaceuticals division in Oncology, Immunology, Neurology and Immuno-Oncology.
With its Allergopharma allergy business unit, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, plans to tap into the growing global allergy market with its high-dose hypoallergenic products for specific immunotherapy and diagnosis of type 1 allergies. Allergopharma lastyear broke ground on a new production facility to serve new markets such as China and USA. Linari, who will take over the helm at Reinbek, Germany-based Allergopharma, has already gained experience with the allergy business as Head of S.p.A. and Allergopharma S.p.A. in Italy. Prior to that, he developed the China strategy of the biopharmaceuticals division as Head of Strategy of the division among others.
Please find CVs and photos of Udit Batra, Uta Kemmerich-Keil and Marco Linari here.