Takeda’s new president is getting attention. The company announced last week that it named former GSK-er Chris Weber CEO. The New York Times noted in its coverage that appointing a French citizen is in line with a trend among Japanese companies to look abroad for hires, and Bloomberg noted Wednesday that Weber not only lacks Takeda experience, but is also the first non-Japanese executive to lead the company.
Weber is expected to be named CEO in April, when Yasuchika Hasegawa leaves. Robert Dujarric of the Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies at Temple University told Bloomberg that the unique hire has a benefit beyond just being different. “A guy who’s not from Takeda, whether he’s Japanese or foreign, can much more easily fire people, restructure and close businesses,” he said.