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Stout to quit as GSK restructures

Published on 10/12/07 at 02:40pm

GlaxoSmithKline has unveiled new appointments to its board of directors and the departure of its current president of Pharmaceuticals David Stout.

Andrew Witty, recently selected as the company's next chief executive, and Chris Viehbacher, president US Pharmaceuticals, will join the board with effect from January 2008.

David Stout and Chris Viehbacher both lost out to Witty in the company's internal competition for the position chief executive this year. Witty is set to replace current chief executive JP Garnier in June 2008.

David Stout will leave GSK in February 2008 and his role at the company will no longer exist.

Mr Stout was previously the boss of both his competitors for the job of chief executive, and has been at the company for eleven years.

Mr Garnier said: "I would like to thank David sincerely for his significant contribution to GSK and for the support he has given me over many years. We wish him well in his future endeavours."

GSK has undergone significant change in 2007, and announced major structural shifts with the posting of poor third quarter figures this year.

Sales suffered following safety scares over the flagship product Avandia, marketed for treatment of diabetes.

Witty and Viehbacher will help oversee a programme of cutbacks aimed to save around $1.4 billion by 2010, which will include losses in all divisions.

The company's chairman Sir Christopher Gent said: "I am very pleased that both Andrew and Chris will be joining the Board. In doing so, we have increased the overall number of executive directors on the Board, and ensured that it remains strongly aligned to GSK's strategy and operational performance."

Eddie Gray, the current head of GSK Pharmaceuticals in the UK will succeed Andrew Witty as the company's president of pharmaceuticals in Europe, assuming his new position on 1 January 2008.

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