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Former Schering execs become Bausch+Lomb chairman, CEO

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Fred Hassan has been named as chairman and Brent Saunders as chief executive officer at Bausch+Lomb.

The company said Monday that Hassan and Saunders assume their new posts immediately and take over for Gerald Ostrove, who is retiring from the chairman and CEO roles and will serve as a consultant to the new leaders.

Most recently, Hassan was chairman and CEO of Schering-Plough Corp. until its merger with Merck & Co. in November. Bausch+Lomb said he led a successful six-year transformation of the pharmaceutical company’s business.

Before that, Hassan served as chairman and CEO of Pharmacia Corp., where he also executed a turnaround, and prior to that was president of the U.S. operations at Wyeth and held positions of increasing importance at Novartis. He has served as a senior adviser to investment firm Warburg Pincus, majority owner of Bausch+Lomb, since November 2009. 

"Jerry Ostrov stabilized a very challenging situation at Bausch+Lomb and helped move us toward a stronger global organization," Hassan said in a statement. "During his tenure, the company improved on many fronts. We thank him for these major accomplishments. Now we will be initiating a new phase to take Bausch+Lomb to an even higher level of performance. I look forward to my role as chairman of an active and engaged board of directors, working closely with and supporting our new CEO Brent Saunders."

Saunders previously served as senior vice president and president of Schering-Plough’s Consumer Healthcare unit, where he implemented a successful growth strategy that included expansion into global markets, according to Bausch+Lomb. As a member of Schering-Plough’s six-person executive committee, he also played a key role in the transformation of the company.

He joined Schering-Plough in 2003 in the new executive committee under Hassan as the head of a new compliance and business practices unit. Saunders managed Schering-Plough’s integration of Organon BioSciences and led Schering-Plough’s integration planning teams for the 2009 merger with Merck.

"I am honored and excited by this appointment," Saunders commented. "My goal is to power up Bausch+Lomb to its rightful position as the global innovation leader in eye health. We are forging the talented people of Bausch+Lomb into a winning team with a winning attitude, with a relentless focus on execution. We’ll be working hard to deliver the value in our pipeline, while creating more value for the future."


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