AstraZeneca announces exit of MedImmune ceo

6/27/2008

LONDON The sudden departure of the chief executive officer of a company acquired last year by AstraZeneca has caused problems for the drug maker.

David Mott, chief executive officer of the American company MedImmune, plans to leave the company and the end of next month, AstraZeneca announced. Mott had visited the U.K. weeks ago, but made no indication at the time that he would leave. His contract required him to stay for a year.

“Under Dave Mott’s leadership, the team at MedImmune has built a unique capability to discover, develop and deliver innovative biologic treatments—an important element of AstraZeneca’s future strategy,” AstraZeneca chief executive officer David Brennan said.

AstraZeneca purchased MedImmune last summer for nearly $16 billion in attempt to expand its portfolio amid competition from generic drugs due to looming patent expirations.

Tony Zook, executive vice president of global marketing and chief executive of North American operations for AstraZeneca, will replace Mott until the company hires a permanent replacement.

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