Pierre-Alain Ruffieux, the Chief Executive of contract drug manufacturer Lonza (LONN.S), is set to depart from the Swiss company by mutual agreement at the end of this month, as announced on Monday. Lonza stated that it will provide a detailed discussion of its medium-term strategy and outlook during its upcoming Capital Markets Day on October 17. Chairman Albert Baehny will assume the role of CEO temporarily until a permanent successor to Ruffieux is appointed.
In premarket trading, Lonza’s shares experienced a 3.3% decline. The decline in share price can be attributed to Lonza’s reduction of its 2023 earnings forecast in July, citing reduced demand for dietary supplement capsules and a decrease in the number of projects undertaken by biotech customers in early-stage drug development and cell and gene therapy.
Ruffieux, a former Roche executive who joined Lonza in 2020, played a key role in the company’s involvement in the production of COVID-19 vaccines for Moderna (MRNA.O) during the pandemic. He also spearheaded an investment initiative to support drug developers working on new therapeutic proteins, cell, and gene therapies. This initiative was partially funded through the sale of Lonza’s specialty chemicals business to private equity investors in 2021 for $4.69 billion.
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