Germany's Bayer taps Pfizer's Olivier Brandicourt to head Bayer HealthCare

Olivier Brandicourt

Bayer Group CEO Marijn Dekkers has high expectations for the growing Bayer HealthCare division, which makes up nearly half of the company's revenues. He has turned to a top Pfizer ($PFE) executive, 57-year-old Dr. Olivier Brandicourt, to realize those expectations. Brandicourt will assume the top job at Bayer HealthCare Nov. 1, taking over the reins from executive Wolfgang Plischke, who has been running the unit while the company found a new leader.

"With Olivier Brandicourt we have found a strong leader with outstanding international experience and a successful track record in the healthcare industry," Dekkers said. "I am convinced that he can significantly contribute to the further growth of our healthcare business."

Brandicourt had held a number of senior-level jobs at Pfizer. Since May 2012, he was president and general manager of emerging markets and established products there. Brandicourt holds a medical degree with a subspecialty in infectious diseases and tropical medicine, as well as a master's degree in biology from Paris 12 University, France.

Bayer HealthCare had sales of €18.61 billion ($24.3 billion) last year, placing it tenth on FiercePharma's Top Pharma Companies by 2012 Revenues and making it one of only three on that list to grow revenues in 2012. Dekkers has said he wanted to achieve 6% growth in that operation over the next few years, and the unit has nearly done that this year. In the second quarter it reported growth of 5.5%, adding €2.83 billion ($3.8 billion) to the company's top line.

Bayer HealthCare revenues have been powered by three of its relatively new drugs. The anticoagulent Xarelto, cancer treatment Stivarga and the macular degeneration treatment Eylea all have outstripped their sales targets so far this year. That allowed the company to raise its estimates for new-drug sales to €1.4 billion, or about $1.9 billion, up from its previous €1 billion estimate. 

- here's the announcement

Special Report: Top Pharma Companies by 2012 Revenues - Bayer Healthcare