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Novartis names new leader for Alcon as Buehler retires

🕐 1 min read

Swiss drug maker Novartis International AG has appointed new heads of its Fort Worth-based eye care division Alcon and generics division Sandoz, the group’s second and third largest businesses after pharmaceuticals.

Jeff George, who joined Novartis in January 2007 and previously led Sandoz, will replace retiring Kevin Buehler as head of Alcon, effective May 1, Novartis said on April 9.

Richard Francis will become head of Sandoz, the company added. Francis previously had leadership roles in sales and commercial divisions of Sanofi and Wyeth.

Under George’s leadership, Sandoz grew from $7.5 billion in sales in 2009 to $9.2 billion in 2013. He also oversaw Sandoz’ expansion to 164 countries globally, where it has more than 26,000 associates.

The three Alcon businesses – surgical, pharmaceutical and vision care – generated net sales of $10.5 billion in 2013. Alcon has more than 24,000 employees worldwide, with operations in 75 countries and products available in 180 markets.

-Betty Dillard bdillard@bizpress.net  

Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

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