Perrigo CEO Uwe Roehrhoff leaves abruptly

  • Push-out Score determined
  • After less than one year in the position
  • Thanks and good wishes for Roehrhoff
  • Murray Kessler taking over

(exechange) — Dublin, Ireland, October 8, 2018 — Uwe Roehrhoff, chief executive of Perrigo, leaves. It is an abrupt change. As announced by Perrigo Company plc in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Monday, October 8, 2018, Uwe F. Roehrhoff leaves his post as Chief Executive Officer at the pharmaceutical company after less than one year in the role, effective immediately.

No company wants a CEO to flame out in the first year.

Roehrhoff’s move comes five months after Rolf Classon took over as Chairman of Perrigo Company plc.

Roehrhoff’s duties will be taken over by Murray S. Kessler, a former Chief Executive Officer of Lorillard Tobacco Company.

The fact that Roehrhoff’s successor is brought in from outside suggests that the board may seek to stimulate change with fresh ideas and new initiatives.

In general, an outsider does not have the constraints of an insider when it comes to leading painful changes or making unpopular decisions.

“Now is the appropriate time to make this change”

Roehrhoff’s sudden departure from the CEO post is explained as follows. Chairman of the Board of Directors, Rolf Classon, said: “The Board and Uwe mutually agreed the transition was in the best interest of the Company and, given the previously announced separation of the Rx business, now is the appropriate time to make this change. The Board determined that Murray is the right CEO for Perrigo’s consumer focused strategy going forward.”

Precise information about Roehrhoff’s future plans was not immediately available.

“Stepped down/resign”

Perrigo said: “Mr. Roehrhoff stepped down as President, CEO and board member and will make himself available to ensure a smooth and successful transition.”

Perrigo further said: “Perrigo Company plc (the “Parent”) announced the departure of Uwe Roehrhoff as the President and Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”) of each of Parent and Perrigo Management Company, a Michigan corporation and a subsidiary of the Parent (the “Company,” and together with Parent and each of their subsidiaries and affiliates, “Perrigo”). Mr. Roehrhoff gave notice on October 2, 2018 of his intent to resign as President and CEO of the Parent and the Company and as a member of the Board of Directors of the Parent (the “Board”) effective October 8, 2018.”

Share price decline

The change follows a decline in the share price of Perrigo Company plc since January 2018.

Chaired by Rolf Classon

Perrigo Company plc is chaired by Rolf Classon.

Rolf Classon, 71, has been a director of Perrigo since May 2017 and was appointed Chairman of the Board in May 2018.

In the position of CEO since 2018

Uwe F. Roehrhoff has been the President and Chief Executive Officer at Perrigo Company plc since January 15, 2018.

Prior to joining Perrigo, Roehrhoff served as Chief Executive Officer of Gerresheimer AG, a leading global manufacturer of pharmaceutical packaging products and medical devices for storage, dosage and safe administration of drugs.

He began his career with Gerresheimer AG in 1991 and steadily advanced to serve in a number of key leadership roles in Europe and North America, including leading the American subsidiary Gerresheimer Glass Inc. from 2001 until 2010.

He served as an executive board member from 2003 until 2017, responsible for two of the company’s three business units, and CEO of Gerresheimer AG from 2010 until his retirement in August 2017.

Since May 2017, Roehrhoff has served as deputy chairman of Klöckner&Co SE.

Roehrhoff also served as Audit Committee Chairman on the Board of Directors of Catalent, Inc. from February 2017 until February 2018.

At the time of Roehrhoff’s appointment as Chief Executive Officer at Perrigo, Laurie Brlas, then Chairman, had commented: “The Board of Directors is excited to announce the appointment of Uwe as President and Chief Executive Officer. He is an experienced, well-respected and successful CEO. Uwe brings a strong track record of operational excellence, strategic growth, and healthcare supply chain management. As the CEO of Gerresheimer AG, a publicly-traded international manufacturer for the global pharmaceutical and healthcare industries, Uwe’s transformative strategic vision and focus on operational excellence enhanced the company’s leading market positions and created significant value for shareholders of approximately 225%1 in total shareholder return as CEO. We are confident that his leadership style and industry, financial and operational expertise are the right fit for Perrigo.”

At the time of his appointment as Chief Executive Officer at Perrigo, Roehrhoff had said: “I am excited for the opportunity at Perrigo. I look forward to working with Perrigo’s experienced management team, who have been instrumental in positioning the Company’s consumer OTC and prescription pharmaceutical businesses to capitalize on current trends in the market. I have long admired Perrigo’s operational excellence and its mission to deliver high-quality, affordable healthcare products that improve the lives of patients and families. I see great opportunity to leverage the Company’s unique asset base and to lead its talented employees to deliver enhanced value for shareholders. Perrigo’s core values resonate with me deeply, and I look forward to leading this organization into its next stage of evolution.”

Push-out Score determined

The Push-out Score™ determined by exechange suggests that push-out forces have contributed to the change.

Read the full story in the exechange report 42.2018 ($).