Ex-Schering chiefs join up at Bausch

Everyone was watching to see where ex-Schering-Plough chief Fred Hassan (photo) would land after the big Merck merger put him out of a job. Which drugmaker would he end up leading next?

Well, we have the answer now. And it's not a drugmaker--or at least not primarily a drugmaker. It's eye-care specialist Bausch & Lomb. Hassan will take over as chairman of the board, and one of his ex-Schering deputies--Brent Saunders, who served as president of the Schering consumer healthcare unit--will be his CEO.

It's easy to see where this move came from: Hassan has been serving as a senior adviser to the investment firm Warburg Pincus since the merger went through. And Bausch is majority owned by that very same firm. But Hassan's interest in the job says a little something about where the pharma business is going these days. You know the word: Diversification. Just as Novartis is laying out big money for Bausch competitor Alcon as a way to diversify beyond prescription drugs, Hassan is branching into eye care, too. Call it a diversification of his resume.

- see the Bausch & Lomb release
- read the story from Reuters