Bangalore-headquartered biopharma firm Biocon hasn’t had the best start to the new year. The company announced Thursday that its marketing chief Rakesh Bamzai has resigned after 19 years with the organization. The news triggered a fall in Biocon’s shares which ended 2% lower at the close of trading.
Bamzai’s departure comes after a reorganisation within Biocon last year; he was reportedly tipped as a CEO candidate. The company is run by founder Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw who features among India’s richest and also ranks among the world’s most powerful women. She recently joined the board of Infosys which itself saw a top-level departure when director and former CFO V.Balakrishnan resigned in December. (He has since joined the Aam Aadmi Party led by anti-corruption crusader Arvind Kejriwal, newly installed as Delhi’s chief minister)
Speaking to Forbes, Mazumdar-Shaw disclosed that Bamzai’s exit was brewing for a few months but the parting was amicable.“Rakesh got a great career opportunity and we didn’t want to come in the way of his advancement.” Bamzai’s responsibilities will be handled by COO Arun Chandavarkar until a replacement is found.
While no details were forthcoming on Bamzai’s next assignment in the official press statement, the company veteran, who is well regarded within India’s pharma sector, is joining the $6.8 billion (revenues) Mylan as president in charge of India and emerging markets. He will be reporting to Harry ‘Hal’ Korman, Mylan’s chief operating officer. Mylan’s global president Rajeev Malik is also of Indian origin.
Biocon and Mylan have an ongoing collaboration that dates back to 2009 when the companies signed a pact to develop high-value generics which was expanded last year to include insulin. They recently secured Indian regulatory approval for a clone of Roche’s breast cancer drug Herceptin. Mylan on its part has made a big bet on India, a market it entered in 2007. Since then it has made a string of acquisitions, the last being the $1.6 billion purchase of Agila Specialities, a unit of pharma firm Strides Arcolab. It has fourteen factories in the country and employs 11,000 people.
Source: Forbes Business