Former Roche Pharmaceuticals executive Bill Anderson has been selected to replace Werner Baumann as CEO of the chemical giant Bayer.

The Supervisory Board of the company appointed Anderson, who as head of Roche's Pharmaceuticals Division "successfully led a comprehensive transformation program which resulted in many successful new product launches, significant revenue growth, and greater productivity across the organization," the company said in a news release.

Anderson also was CEO of Genentech, which Bayer called "one of the pioneering companies in the biotech field." While there and at Biogen and Roche, "Anderson was involved in the development and launch of 25 new medicines, including 15 blockbusters." He holds degrees in chemical engineering from the University of Texas and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

In a news release, Anderson said "Bayer is an innovative company that is already delivering tremendous benefits for the nutrition, health and environmental protection of the world" and that "its leading R&D investments in agriculture, medicines and consumer health hold the promise for additional breakthroughs."

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"I look forward to working with the people of Bayer to accelerate innovation, increase performance, advance sustainability and unleash the full potential of the company," he said.

The 60-year-old Baumann will retire in May after working for the company for 35 years. Anderson is set to take over June 1.

Baumann "will work closely with (Anderson) on a smooth transition," the company said. 

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