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Executive Summary

MERRELL DOW's DAVID SHARROCK ADDING RESPONSIBILITY FOR WORLDWIDE pharmaceutical business operations as president and chief operating officer of Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals Inc. Sharrock, 51, has been president and general manager of Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals USA, the firm's U.S. operating arm. Effective Jan. 1, Sharrock replaces Joseph Temple, 58, who becomes chairman and chief executive officer. The firm said in a press release that "as president, Sharrock will have responsibility for all geographic and functional management except research. Albert Sjoerdsma, MD/PhD, president, Merrell Dow Research Institute, will continue to report to Temple." Sharrock has spent his entire career with the Merrell pharmaceutical business, beginning in 1958 when he joined Richardson Merrell in a sales position. At Merrell National, his positions included director of advertising and promotion, and vice president for marketing. His top management experience at Merrell National included stints as an executive vice president and president. He also has international experience, serving as as vice president of Richardson Merrell (Canada), and more recently as head of Merrell Dow's operations in Brazil and Latin America. He has headed the Merrell Dow U.S. operations since Dow acquired Merrell in 1981. Among the group of chemical giants who have expanded into the pharmaceutical field, Dow's experience with Merrell has been an example of successful integration. Boosted by two strong new product introductions in the last few years, Merrell Dow is now a billion dollar-plus business. Other chemical companies who are attempting to duplicate the Dow track record are DuPont, which added to its small existing drug business when it acquired American Critical Care last year, and Monsanto, which entered the drug field with the acquisition of Searle. Under Sharrock, Merrell Dow USA has launched the smoking cessation product Nicorette and the non-sedating antihistamine product Seldane (terfenadine). Both have been strong products. The company has also used innovative promotional schemes in support of the products, including institutional advertising aimed at consumers. In addition, Merrell Dow broke out a separate sales force, Lakeside Pharmaceuticals, that supports Nicorette. Both drugs are possible Rx-to-OTC candidates, and one of Sharrock's key challenges may be to oversee the switch.

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