Merck has appointed Udit Batra, currently Chief Executive Officer and President, Merck Millipore, to lead the combined life science business of Merck Millipore and Sigma-Aldrich once the acquisition of Sigma-Aldrich has been successfully completed.
The planned $17 billion transaction remains subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals, which the company expects to have completed in mid-2015. Until then, Merck Millipore and Sigma-Aldrich will continue to operate as separate companies with Udit Batra and Rakesh Sachdev, President and Chief Executive Officer, Sigma-Aldrich, running both organisations independently. Rakesh Sachdev will serve in an advisory capacity, as needed, to ensure a smooth transition.
Udit Batra, 44, has served as the Chief Executive Officer and President, Merck’s life science business Merck Millipore since March 2014. He joined Merck in 2011 to head the Group’s Consumer Health business. Prior to that, Udit Batra worked at Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics, where he was head of global public health and market access. He served in a range of executive management positions at Novartis, including global Head of Corporate Strategy and Country President for the Pharma Business in Australia.
Karl-Ludwig Kley, Chairman of the Executive Board of Merck, said, “Udit is a proven leader who has demonstrated his ability to work successfully with his leadership team to guide large organisations, drive performance and deliver to our customers. I also want to express my gratitude to the Sigma-Aldrich employees for building the organisation into a leading global life science tools company and to Rakesh, personally, for providing excellent leadership to the Sigma-Aldrich organisation, both culturally and as demonstrated by the company’s strong performance.”