Cancer/HIV hires boost for Roche

BASEL: Roche has bolstered its international communications department with two appointments in the fields of cancer and HIV.

The Swiss-based pharma giant has snapped up Gretchen Fricko, who formerly worked for PR agency Ruder Finn in New York, as international communications manager for its oncology franchise.

Fricko has already left her role as an account supervisor at Ruder Finn, where she worked for six years in both the US and London.

She starts work at Roche on 16 June assuming control of PR for a portfolio including brands such as MabThera and Herceptin.

Roche’s Basel-based communications team has also been bolstered by the appointment of Stella Gu, who takes a similar role to Fricko but overseeing the firm’s HIV products.

Gu has transferred internally within the company from a role as communications manager in Shanghai, China, where she has worked for Roche for seven years.

Brands in Roche’s HIV portfolio include Fuzeon.

Both Fricko and Gu report to head of global pharma business communications Caroline Ashe.

Now ten-strong, Ashe’s team is set for further expansion, with recruitment of two further PROs on the cards. Ashe said she had already shortlisted for the positions.

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