Elan plan slow change at top

The CEO of Athlone’s biggest private employer, Kelly Martin of Elan, is to step down in 2012, the firm announced this week.

In his seven years as CEO, he has reduced Elan’s global presence from 23 sites to eight, and was responsible for the loss of 145 jobs between Athlone and Dublin in 2009.

Elan, who employ nearly 300 people at the Monksland campus, changed Mr Martin’s contract from an open-ended agreement to a fixed-term arrangement.

Martin, credited with stabilising Elan in the eyes of the market since he joined in 2003, when its share price could fluctuate from €60 to €1, will stay on to complete 10 years in the firm by acting as an advisor after stepping down from his executive position.

He has overseen the bulk of the company’s highs and lows in that time – including the temporary banning of its successful multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri and last year’s deal to bring in US healthcare giant Johnson & Johnson as a significant shareholder in the company.

In a statement, Elan said the announcement was intended to provide employees, patients, business collaborators and investors with "clarity and continuity" on the executive leadership of the company.

“Elan’s board is committed to long-term leadership succession planning as it is an important part of good governance policies,” said outgoing chairman Kyran McLaughlin.

 

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