Endo Health Solutions names new CEO

Rajiv De Silva, who worked for Novartis and Valeant Pharmaceuticals, will take over on March 18.
Rajiv De Silva, who worked for Novartis and Valeant Pharmaceuticals, will take over on March 18.
Posted: February 27, 2013

Endo Health Solutions Inc., now has a new chief executive officer to go along with a new headquarters in Malvern, as the board of directors announced Monday that Rajiv De Silva will lead the drug and device company.

Investors hope the stock price, revenue, and profits will also take a new direction - higher, of course - when the former Novartis and Valeant Pharmaceuticals executive takes over on March 18. Dave Holveck announced late last year that he would retire.

De Silva, 46, will make $975,000 in salary and more through incentives and stock options, but he did not land this job because he mixed molecules in a lab. He earned degrees in civil engineering at Princeton and Stanford before getting his MBA at Wharton. After time at McKinsey & Co., he worked for Novartis and then Valeant Pharmaceuticals, where he was involved in the acquisition and integration of 40 companies.

"The board was focused on execution and continuing to integrate our four businesses," Endo board chairman Roger Kimmel said during a conference call with financial analysts. "We were looking for someone with substantial operating experience."

Founded as a separate company in 1997, Endo Pharmaceuticals adopted its current name - Endo Health Solutions - in May 2012 to reflect its diversification to areas of care and types of drug businesses.

But profiting through efficiency has been challenging, accentuated by regulatory and competitive hurdles related to key pain products, Lidoderm and Opana ER. Endo reportedly reached out to other companies, including Valeant, to explore being bought out. Amid that, Endo signed a 12-year lease to move from Chadds Ford into a new building in Malvern, where about 700 of the company's approximately 4,600 employees work.

"We were not of the view that Endo would end up being sold, so we think getting Rajiv as CEO was probably the next best outcome," Gary Nachman, of Susquehanna Financial Group, wrote in a note to clients.

The stock closed Monday at $30.26, up 7.9 percent. But almost every analyst asked Kimmel and De Silva about the possibility of being bought out or selling parts of the company. Neither would answer directly, though Kimmel said the board had the fiduciary responsibility to remain "flexible," and De Silva said he would assess the situation as quickly as possible.


Contact David Sell at dsell@ phillynews.com or 215-854-4506. Read his blog at www.philly.com/phillypharma and on Twitter @phillypharma.

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