Merck fixes on new structure, management

As expected, there’s a new management line-up at Merck. The drugmaker announced that post-merger with Schering-Plough, it will have five main divisions--global human health, animal health, consumer healthcare, research, and manufacturing--each headed up by a manager reporting directly to CEO Richard Clark. Animal health and consumer health will operate as business units separate from the remaining three.

Heading up global human health, the combined company’s largest division, will be Kenneth Frazier. No surprise there; he’s currently running that group for Merck. What’s new here is that the division will encompass prescription drugs, biologics, and vaccines, plus an emerging-markets group. Research will also get its current Merck manager, Peter S. Kim, and so will manufacturing in Willie A. Deese.

A Schering-Plough exec, Raul E. Kohan, will run the new animal-health business. Kohan is now head of Schering’s Intervet animal health company. Another Schering type, Stanley F. Barshay, will serve as interim chief of the consumer health business. He’ll run the company while Merck scouts for a permanent leader to grow that segment, targeting areas outside the U.S.

Overall, about 40 percent of Schering’s senior leadership will be incorporated into the new company, Merck said. The combined company will draw upon the expertise of the people of both Schering-Plough and Merck,” Clark said. “To complement our joint talent, we will be adding leaders from outside the two companies with specific experience in key areas. I am confident that the new Merck will have the right team in place to be able to deliver on the promise of this strong combination with Schering-Plough.” The merger still awaits regulatory approval.

- get the release from Merck
- see the Wall Street Journal story