It's been a big month for news at Novartis.
Just this week, the pharmaceutical company announced a new CEO and a 50% increase in net profit during the fourth quarter of 2009. Joe Jimenez, an American who previously led Novartis' pharmaceutical business, replaces Daniel Vasella, a Swiss medical doctor who has been CEO since 1996.
The company said it reduced the executive committee from 12 to nine positions and eliminated the positions of COO, head of corporate affairs, and head of group quality and technical operations. Vasella will stay on as chairman.
The communications divisions has not been affected - Sheldon Jones remains head of corporate communications for Novartis International AG and Brandi Robinson as VP of corporate communications, an agency spokesperson told PRWeek. Both were named to their current positions in September 2009.
At the beginning of January, Novartis said it planned to acquire Nestle's shares in Alcon, an eye care company but independent directors at the company have recently criticized the bid as too low.