Pfizer, KV listed in 2011's 'spectacular' exec departures

Things gone wrong at the top is the subject of a 10-company roundup of 2011's spectacular executive departures. The story ran in InPharm, but the list includes shenanigans from the banking, retail and consumer electronics industries in addition to pharma.

Pfizer ($PFE), Actelion and KV Pharmaceutical made the list. The KV saga, in which the company is suing to avoid paying certain compensation to former CEO Marc Hermelin, is "one of the most astonishing and regrettable tales of management gone wrong ever seen in pharma," according to the article.

Hermelin sat atop the KV org chart when the company ran into serious regulatory trouble over morphine tablet manufacturing.  KV conducted a recall, laid off three-quarters of its employees and suspended manufacturing, the story said. Its Ethex subsidiary pleaded guilty to criminal fraud charges for making unsafe medicines and must pay $27.6 million in fines and restitution.

Hermelin is accused of the manufacturing compliance failure, impeding FDA investigations and blocking an internal audit intended as a start to correcting the problems, according to the article. "The company's official line at the time was that Hermelin retired from the company, but the new lawsuit indicates he was fired for misconduct," the story said.

- here's the story

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