Friday, April 13, 2007

US AstraZeneca CEO Expands Responsibility.

Lisa R. Davis, VP, Corporate Communications, AstraZeneca just informed me that Tony Zook, who is the AstraZeneca PLC Executive Vice-President, North America and President and Chief Executive Officer of AstraZeneca US will take on added responsibilities.

She said Zook "remains President and CEO for AstraZeneca in the US. In addition, Tony Zook will assume responsibility for Global Marketing from 1 May in addition to his current responsibilities."

Zook succeeded David R. Brennan who was named Chief Executive, AstraZeneca PLC, July 2005 and this puts him one step closer to the top job at AstraZeneca.

Zook received this additional responsibility when Martin Nicklasson resigned. Nicklasson has been an Executive Vice President at AstraZeneca PLC and head of Global Marketing. He was also the CEO of AstraZeneca AB in Sweden, so this dual responsibility is not a first within AstraZeneca.

Nicklasson has been appointed new CEO and President of Biovitrum in Sweden (a small biotech spin-off from Pharmacia) in what may be perceived as a step down in responsibility, however, would give him more independence.

Personally, I think this global-marketing-combined-with-an-area-job set-up is a very smart move by AstraZeneca. The global marketing position is a staff job that few people in a line position would willingly take on, however, in combination with a significant line responsibility, the job gets a different respect and more qualified candidates.

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