Japan's top drugmaker appoints first foreign boss

Japan's top drugmaker said Saturday it had picked a GlaxoSmithKline executive as its next president in a rare example of overseas head-hunting by a major Japanese firm.

The board of directors at Takeda Pharmaceutical, which has been active in foreign acquisitions in recent years, approved 47-year-old French Christophe Weber, as and candidate as the next chief executive.

He will be the first non-Japanese chief in 230 years of history at the company based in western Japan's Osaka.

Weber will join Takeda to take the role of chief operating officer by April 2014 and is expected to become president upon approval at a general meeting of shareholders in June, Takeda said in a statement.

Current president and chief executive Yasuchika Hasegawa is expected to become chairman and chief executive.

"We have extremely high expectations for Mr Weber's contributions to further enhance and accelerate the implementation of Takeda's global strategy," Hasegawa said in the statement.

Weber, educated at the University of Lyon, has held various positions at GSK in Europe, United States and the Asia-Pacific region.

Takeda operates in more than 70 countries after its 2011 acquisition of major Swiss rival Nycomed for $14 billion.

There are only a handful of foreign chiefs at leading Japanese companies. Carlos Ghosn, the of French auto group Renault who also heads Nissan Motor, is one of the most prominent.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Japanese firm buys US pharmaceutical company

Oct 05, 2012

(AP)—A Japanese pharmaceutical company is acquiring LigoCyte Pharmaceuticals in a $60 million deal to expand its vaccine division, Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. announced.

US drug firm Mylan to buy Indian firm for $1.6 bn

Feb 27, 2013

US generic drugs specialist Mylan said Thursday it would buy a unit of India's pharma firm Strides Arcolab for $1.6 billion, boosting its presence in the high-growth injectable drugs market.

Recommended for you

Supercomputers link proteins to drug side effects

Oct 20, 2014

New medications created by pharmaceutical companies have helped millions of Americans alleviate pain and suffering from their medical conditions. However, the drug creation process often misses many side ...

No added benefit proven for umeclidinium/vilanterol in COPD

Oct 20, 2014

The drug combination umeclidinium/vilanterol (trade name Anoro) has been approved since May 2014 for adults with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). In an early benefit assessment pursuant to the Act on the Reform ...

User comments