Ruder Finn nets Berdy to lead Novartis brief

Ruder Finn has appointed Mikhaila Berdy to a newly created associate director position.

Berdy, previously a senior consultant at Chandler Chicco Agency, will help run Ruder's cardiovascular and oncology account with pharma firm Novartis.

Meanwhile, Ruder Finn head of healthcare Claire Martin is to become acting MD of healthcare. Martin will cover the maternity leave of Penny Lennon.

Berdy, who will report to Martin, said her appointment came as a result of ‘recent organic growth' at Ruder Finn.

One of her first tasks will be to work on the launch of Novartis's hypertension treatment Rasilez, which has just received approval from the US Food and Drug Administration.

She said: ‘We are hoping to get approval throughout Europe over the next few months.'

Berdy will also be involved in Novartis's global cardiovascular portfolio. She will oversee oncology brands such as Glivec, which is used to treat chronic myeloid leukaemia and gastrointestinal cancer. She will also be involved in the UK launch of cancer drug Tasigna, which is expected to rival Bristol-Myers Squibb's Sprycel.

An experienced healthcare practitioner, Berdy has, over the past eight years, handled UK and international work for clients such as AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Roche, Bayer, Biogen and Lilly.

She spent three years at CCA, working in London and Los Angeles. Before joining the agency, she was an account director at Cohn & Wolfe.

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