GSK replaces US pharma ops head Connelly amid struggles
- In the midst of slumping share prices and poor performance in the U.S. market, UK-based GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is trying to shore up performance by promoting Jack Bailey as head of US pharmaceutical operations. The U.S. market accounts for 1/3 of GSK's sales.
- Deirdre Connelly is retiring after six years as president for the North American pharma division.
- GSK has also tried to improve its U.S. outlook by cutting prices for respiratory drugs last year to regain market share, especially for Advair, its best-selling asthma medication. The company is also cutting 900 jobs in North Carolina as part of a massive global reorganization.
The most recent personnel changes at GSK are taking place in the context of a larger initiative, which involves a plan to cut costs by $1.54 billion over the next three years.
Under this plan, half of the proposed savings will come in 2016. Although GSK is the largest UK-based drug maker, with a total of roughly 99,000 employees worldwide in 115 countries, about 17,000 GSK employees are based in the U.S., mainly in Philadelphia and at North Carolina's Research Triangle Park.