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Malvinder Singh steps down, Atul Sobti new Ranbaxy CEO

Malvinder Singh steps down, Atul Sobti new Ranbaxy CEO
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First Published: Sun, May 24 2009. 06 56 PM IST
Updated: Sun, May 24 2009. 06 56 PM IST
New Delhi: Ranbaxy CMD Malvinder Mohan Singh on Sunday stepped down, paving the way for appointment of Atul Sobti as the new CEO and MD for three years.
Tsutomu Une, non-executive director, has been elected as chairman of the Board of Ranbaxy Laboratories.
“Malvinder decided that he needs to leave Ranbaxy,” Sobti said in a press conference where the reconstitution of the management team was announced. Sobti at present is Ranbaxy’s chief operating officer.
Une said Ranbaxy will remain a listed company. “We want to keep Ranbaxy as a listed company,” he said.
The decision to appoint Sobti and Une was taken at the Board’s meeting on Sunday.
Ranbaxy board has approved the decision to effect change in the management team. The change of guard comes nearly a year after Ranbaxy was acquired by Japanese drug major Daiichi-Sankyo.
Daiichi had acquired majority stake in Ranbaxy for about Rs22,000 crore.
“It was a difficult decision to separate from Ranbaxy. But it was the right time for me to do so. I leave with complete confidence that initial transition phase followed Daiichi’s acquisition of majority share holding interest in Ranbaxy has been completed successfully...” Malvinder Mohan Singh said in a Ranbaxy release.
The company has posted a net loss of over Rs1,032 crore for the year ended December 2008 as compared to net profit of Rs617.72 crore in the previous year. This could have triggered change of guard at the top level.
Commenting on the development, Takashi Shoda, a director of Ranbaxy and CEO of Daiichi-Sankyo, said, “We very much appreciate the efforts of the Singh family, which grew Ranbaxy from a small, local Indian company to a large MNC it has become today.”
When asked if the company would remain listed, Une said, “We want to keep Ranbaxy as a listed company.”
The board of the company now stands reduced to seven members with two other board members -- Balinder Singh Dhillion and Sunil Godhwani-- also stepping down.
The new board has four independent directors, along with Une and Sobti.
Asked how the replacement of Malvinder Singh could be managed, Sobti said, “Replacement of Malvinder is never going to be easy but the decision is taken.”
He stressed that the hybrid model to be developed by the company would bring “huge benefits” to both (Ranbaxy and Daiichi) and the decisions taken today would help in faster achievement of the vision of creation of the hybrid model.
When asked what is happening on the regulatory hurdles faced by the company in the US, Sobti said, “We are progressing well with the USFDA and the negotiations are on the right track.”
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First Published: Sun, May 24 2009. 06 56 PM IST