Pfizer chief takes J&J, Abbott as biz models

What does Pfizer have in common with a side of beef? They would both be easier to manage if they were cut into pieces. Apparently that's what Pfizer chief Jeff Kindler (photo) plans to do. But rather than taking the butcher's diagram as a model, he's checking out Johnson & Johnson and Abbott Laboratories.

"We are breaking the company down into smaller units so we aren't dependent on any single product," Kindler told Bloomberg (as reported by the Wall Street Journal). "I am a great admirer of J&J and Abbott's business model."

The comparison isn't quite complete--Pfizer doesn't have a device business, like Abbott and J&J both do--but as a management goal, it's understandable. Especially if you, like Kindler, believe that smaller biz units can be more nimble and innovative. Plus, with Pfizer about to swallow Wyeth, the resulting behemoth could be as unwieldy as Captain Ahab's white whale.

As the WSJ Health Blog points out, buying Wyeth could actually help Pfizer break into smaller units. Wyeth has animal health, consumer products and vaccines divisions.

- read the Health Blog post