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Novartis names Bulto as new head of U.S. drugs business

Novartis names Bulto as new head of U.S. drugs business
FILE PHOTO: Swiss drugmaker Novartis' logo is seen at the company's plant in the northern Swiss town of Stein, Switzerland October 23, 2017. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo -
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Arnd Wiegmann(Reuters)
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ZURICH (Reuters) – Swiss drugmaker Novartis <NOVN.S> has named company veteran Victor Bulto as head of its U.S. pharmaceuticals business, effective on Sept. 1.

He replaces Fabrice Chouraqui, who will step down at the end of August, Novartis said in a statement.

It gave no reason for the switch, which comes as the drugmaker faces U.S. scrutiny over its handling of a case of manipulated data linked to its $2 million per treatment gene therapy, Zolgensma.

A spokesman said the two matters were not related.

The statement said Chouraqui had “consistently demonstrated strong leadership, ethics and integrity” during his tenure.

Bulto, who will report to Marie France Tschudin, global president of Novartis Pharmaceuticals, is a 14-year company veteran who has worked across every therapeutic area at the group and helped launch several products, including top-selling inflammation drug Cosentyx in the U.S. market.

(Reporting by Paul Arnold Writing by Michael Shields; Editing by Stephen Powell)

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