- Sanofi is quietly compiling a list of candidates to replace ousted CEO Chris Veibacher. Executives from Takeda, Smith & Nephew, Bayer, and Novartis are reportedly on the short list.
- Names that have been floated around include Oliver Bouhon from Smith & Nephew, Olivier Brandicourt from Bayer, Christophe Weber from Takeda, and Eric Cornut from Novartis.
- Leadership ability is critical, as is the ability to ramp up quickly. All candidates under consideration have demonstrated this skill. Pascal Soriot, the current CEO of AstraZeneca, was already approached about the position but said he wasn't interested.
One of the problems ailing Viebacher's tenure as CEO was the sense that he communicated insufficiently with his board. Some feel that as a Canadian-German, he found it difficult to fully connect with most of the French or French-speaking board members of Sanofi.
So perhaps it's not surprising that many of the candidates currently under consideration are French. This very well may be an important consideration, but so is the ability to lead under pressure and having a solid knowledge of asset allocation.