Merck CEO Kenneth C. Frazier Will Retire as CEO Later This Year, Will Stay on as Executive Chairman

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Merck has announced that Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Kenneth C. Frazier will retire as CEO on June 30..

Frazier will continue to serve on Merck’s board of directors as executive chairman for a transition period to be determined by the board. Robert M. Davis, Merck’s current executive vice president, global services, and chief financial officer, was unanimously elected by the Merck board of directors to be the next chief executive officer, effective July 1. Effective April 1, Davis will become the president of Merck.

“It has been a privilege to serve as Merck’s CEO for the past decade and to work with the most dedicated and talented employees and management team in the industry,” Frazier said in a written statement. “As executive chairman, I look forward to collaborating with Rob and our board of directors to help Merck achieve even higher levels of success.”

“The board and I are delighted that Rob will serve as Merck’s next CEO. He has deep knowledge of our company and industry and has been a valued strategic thought partner to me and the Merck senior management team as well as a highly capable finance leader,” Frazier added.

“I am confident that he has the strategic and leadership skills necessary to ensure that the company remains fully committed to its core mission of translating cutting-edge science into products and services that save and improve lives while simultaneously adopting new business and operating models that will unlock future value through innovation, digital transformation, and efficiency.”

Davis joined Merck as chief financial officer in 2014.

“I am honored to be appointed the next chief executive officer of Merck,” Davis said. “I thank the board and Ken for their confidence in me. I plan to continue Ken’s focus on innovation as we aspire to be the premier research-intensive biopharmaceutical company.”