Elan names ex-Glaxo boss as chairman

IRISH pharmaceutical group, Elan has named former Glaxo Wellcome chief executive, Robert (Bob) Ingram as its next chairman.

Mr Ingram — who also filled the role of vice chairman of pharmaceuticals at GlaxoSmithKline (formed by the merger of Wellcome and SmithKline Beecham ten years ago) — will formally assume the role at Elan’s next board meeting, on January 26.

He will succeed outgoing chairman, Kyran McLaughlin, who announced his decision to retire from Elan’s board back in April. Mr McLaughlin said he was “proud to be turning over the chairmanship to such a capable and high integrity leader”.

Speaking about his new role, Mr Ingram said that he has been impressed with the progress Elan has made over the past several years, “in advancing the science, improving its financial performance and constructing unique and far-reaching collaborations, which will enable the company to continue to invest in science and innovate within the world of novel therapeutic advances.”

Elan said just two months ago, at the publication of its third-quarter results, it was confident it would be in a position to name a new chairman before the end of the year.

At that time the company kept in place its positive full-year guidance, but also saw a quarterly net loss of nearly €32 million.

That statement followed confirmation the recent boardroom unrest at the company — which ultimately saw the resignation of two ‘dissident’ directors — had been fully resolved.

Elan also said in late October that its long-term plans to spin-off its Athlone-based drug delivery business, EDT (ideally through its flotation, as a separate entity, on one or more stock exchanges) remain on the back-burner, until confidence returns to the international equity markets.

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