Caroline's Feed
May 16, 2013

Novartis’ Vasella exit opens door to Roche stake sale

ZURICH, May 16 (Reuters) – A changing of the guard at
Switzerland’s two biggest drugmakers is fuelling talk that
Novartis may finally sell its multi-billion-dollar
stake in cross-town rival Roche, potentially unlocking
value for both sets of shareholders.

The departure of Daniel Vasella after 17 years as chairman
of Novartis and the forthcoming retirement of his adversary,
Roche chairman Franz Humer, may prompt both sides to negotiate a
sale that could boost earnings per share for each – and appease
shareholders during a period of slower growth.

May 15, 2013

Roche banks on new drug data to defend cancer business

ZURICH, May 15 (Reuters) – Swiss drugmaker Roche
hopes data published this week will show it has a viable
follow-on product to help fend off cheaper competition for its
best-selling cancer drug, which loses patent protection in
Europe later this year.

Roche is set to present full results early on Thursday of a
late-stage study for its GA101 drug in chronic lymphocytic
leukaemia (CLL), ahead of the American Society of Clinical
Oncology annual meeting in Chicago from May 31 to June 4.

May 13, 2013

ABB executive quits days after CEO says will step down

ZURICH, May 13 (Reuters) – Swiss engineering group ABB Ltd
has announced a second senior executive departure in
less than a week, saying its chief technology officer (CTO) was
quitting just three days after revealing its chief executive was
to leave.

The world’s biggest supplier of industrial motors and power
grids said Prith Banerjee, who joined ABB in 2012, would leave
for family reasons in the next few weeks after less than a year
in the post.

May 7, 2013

Adecco sees European labor market bottoming out

ZURICH (Reuters) – Adecco (ADEN.VX: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the world’s largest staffing company, said there were signs austerity-ravaged markets in southern Europe were starting to stabilize as big drops in wages make workers there more competitive.

The euro zone’s debt crisis has paralyzed job markets, sending unemployment in the single-currency bloc to a new record of 12.1 percent in March, meaning more than 19 million euro zone citizens are out of work.

Apr 24, 2013

ABB to step up cost cuts after profit miss

ZURICH (Reuters) – Swiss industrial group ABB (ABBN.VX: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) will step up cost-cutting measures to boost profitability in what it expects to be a tough second half of the year after first-quarter profit fell short of expectations.

The company was hit by slowing growth in the United States and hesitant spending by European clients, but Chief Executive Joe Hogan boosted margins with $260 million of savings through sourcing and productivity improvements.

Apr 24, 2013

Novartis names new finance chief to boost productivity

ZURICH, April 24 (Reuters) – Novartis named Harry
Kirsch as its new CFO, betting that his experience of improving
performance at the Swiss drugmaker’s pharmaceuticals division
will help it navigate a wave of patent expiries.

The surprise announcement is the second leadership change in
as many quarters after Chairman Daniel Vasella stepped down in
February after 17 years leading the group.

Apr 24, 2013

Novartis seeks productivity improvements with new CFO

ZURICH, April 24 (Reuters) – Novartis named Harry
Kirsch as its new CFO, betting that his experience of improving
performance at the Swiss drugmaker’s pharmaceuticals division
will help it navigate a wave of patent expiries.

The surprise announcement is the second leadership change in
as many quarters after Chairman Daniel Vasella stepped down in
February after 17 years leading the group.

Apr 16, 2013

Actelion flags possible early return to profit growth

ZURICH, April 16 (Reuters) – Actelion, Europe’s
largest biotech company, said it may return to profit growth
sooner than expected after its first-quarter earnings more than
doubled and sales of its mainstay drug beat expectations.

The Swiss company received a boost last year after heart and
lung drug Opsumit, its replacement for top-seller Tracleer, beat
expectations in a clinical trial.

Mar 25, 2013

Analysis: Roche stays a step ahead of copycat drugmakers

ZURICH (Reuters) – Delays in developing copies of Roche’s top-selling biotech drug are justifying the Swiss company’s decision to stay out of biotech generics to focus on improved, patented versions of its medicines.

Roche faces its first big test at the end of this year when it loses exclusivity in Europe on MabThera, also known as Rituxan, a treatment for blood cancers and rheumatoid arthritis that had sales of 6.7 billion Swiss francs ($7 billion) in 2012.

Mar 5, 2013

Long-serving Roche chairman to step down next year

ZURICH (Reuters) – Roche’s influential Chairman Franz Humer said on Tuesday he will not stand for re-election next year when he will have served 16 years at the helm, potentially accelerating a shift of emphasis towards the Swiss drugmaker’s U.S. operations.

“Roche is in excellent shape and well positioned to meet future challenges. This is a good time to hand over to a successor,” Humer, 66, said in a surprise announcement at the company’s annual general meeting in Basel.