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W-L MANAGEMENT SHIFTS IN WAKE OF CHAIRMAN HAGAN's RETIREMENT

Executive Summary

W-L MANAGEMENT SHIFTS IN WAKE OF CHAIRMAN HAGAN's RETIREMENT, announced Sept. 4, put spotlight on current Warner Lambert President Joe Williams and the succession to chief operating officer. Williams, who has spent his whole working career since 1950 with Parke-Davis and W-L, is the obvious choice to succeed Ward Hagan as chairman and chief executive officer when Hagan steps down in June at age 65. Williams has been president of W-L for five years, assuming that position when Hagan moved up to chairman in 1979. Williams is 58. W-L did not have an official statement on the management shifts, and the likely succession behind Williams is less clear. There are currently two exec VPs at W-L: Charles Tse, President, Internal.; and Melvin Goodes, President, U.S.Operations. Both moved up to the exec VP level at the beginning of this year. Neither is on the company's board. With Hagan and Williams, W-L had a balance between one top exec with background in the consumer products business and one with an Rx drugs background. With the restructuring at W-L during the last five years, the firm has become much more oriented to the health care field, and the consumer products background may not be as important for a top spot in the future. In the drug area, the company's R&D pipeline has grown dramatically in the last four years, from four products in clinical trials and four in preclinicals in 1980 to at least 14 products currently in clinical trials and another six in preclinicals. Pending NDAs include the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory Maxicam (isoxicam), the once-daily beta-blocker bevantolol and bronchodilator Beta-Air (procaterol). In 1982, Hagan and Williams orchestrated a large move into the medical device field through the acquisition for almost $450 mil. of medical instrument mfr. IMED. (PARAGRAPH)During 1984, Williams has emerged as one of the leaders of the U.S. drug industry in his role as PMA Chairman. He has been involved steadily since April with the final negotiations on the ANDA/patent restoration bill. He was reportedly one of two execs from the brandname industry in the final negotiations on the bill before House passage on Sept. 6. Williams was also put in the position of trying to keep the ANDA/patent restoration bill moving on Capitol Hill while seeking changes to satisfy the significant group of dissenting companies within the assn.

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