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Platform Specialty names Sigma-Aldrich Chief as new CEO

December 17, 2015
Chemical Value Chain

Platform Specialty Products Corp. named Sigma-Aldrich Corp.’s chief executive Rakesh Sachdev as its new CEO, replacing Daniel H. Leever, who is retiring effective immediately.

In October, the company had said Mr. Leever would retire when a replacement was found, pummeling its shares that day. The stock is down 54% so far this year as of Tuesday’s close. Shares were inactive premarket.

Mr. Sachdev was the chief executive of Sigma-Aldrich, which was recently acquired by Merck KGaA for $17 billion. The deal was completed Tuesday.

When Mr. Leever’s planned retirement was announced, Platform founder Martin E. Franklin told The Wall Street Journal in an interview that the company wanted to start the leadership transition process as it planned to seek financing for its buy of U.K. specialty-chemicals firm Alent PLC.

Mr. Franklin also said at the time that he planned to take on a more active role at the company.

Platform Specialty Products was founded in 2013 by Mr. Franklin as a vehicle to buy specialty-chemicals companies. It is backed by activist investor William Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management LP, which owns a 20% stake in Platform, according to FactSet data.

By Austen Hufford and Chelsea Dulaney

Source: Wall Street Journal

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