Merck's Clyburn Departs for Different Healthcare Realm

Merck_Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Merck announced that Frank Clyburn, executive vice president and president of human health, will be leaving the company on February 1, 2022. Clyburn will take on the role of chief executive officer and member of the board of directors at International Flavors & Fragrances (IFF).

Clyburn began his tenure at Merck in 2008, holding increasing positions of responsibility. Prior to being named president of human health in March 2021, he was chief commercial officer for human health and president of the company’s global oncology business. Under his current position at Merck, he had full profit and loss responsibility for almost 90% of the company’s $48 million business.

“I am extremely appreciative of Frank’s significant contributions to our company during his fourteen years with Merck,” said Robert M. Davis, chief executive officer and president of Merck. “Frank has been a key catalyst for value creation, an incredible business strategist, a dedicated people leader and a fierce advocate for patients everywhere.”

He added, “Frank’s strategic and operational excellence helped establish Merck as a global leader in oncology. Our human health business has delivered strong and sustainable growth under Frank’s leadership, and we are well-positioned to continue this momentum with the strong human health team we have in place.”

Clyburn’s replacement is expected to be announced in the coming weeks.

At IFF, Clyburn is succeeding Andreas Fibig as CEO. IFF also chose to separate the roles of chairman and chief executive officer. Dale Morrison, a long-standing director of IFF, will take on the position of non-executive chairman of the board of directors on February 14. Ed Breen, IFF Director, will stay on the board as an independent director. There will no longer be a lead independent director role.

“Frank is the best executive to lead IFF into its next chapter at the pace we need. His strong operating experience plus his hands-on approach and customer-centric perspective will accelerate the execution of IFF’s strategic and operating priorities,” Morrison said.

Clyburn stated, “I am honored to serve as IFF’s next CEO. This is an iconic company and industry leader with tremendous opportunity to deliver outstanding customer experience and long-term, sustainable growth. The purpose and vision of IFF is very closely linked with accelerating global trends of nutrition, wellness and sustainability, which means that together, colleagues around the world can deliver significant value for both customers and shareholders. Working with IFF’s world-class talent, unrivaled offerings and impressive innovation platform, I am excited to bring my approach to executional excellence to capitalize on IFF’s bright future.”

Fibig, who was both chairman and chief executive officer of IFF, announced his retirement on September 30, 2021. He had been with IFF for 10 years, with more than seven of them in these roles.  

At the time, Fibig noted, “Leading this 132-year-old iconic company through a true transformation this past decade has been an honor. With the company delivering strong sales growth and the integration of Nutrition & Biosciences well underway, I feel now is the right time to let the next chapter of IFF’s legacy begin. We have created an unrivaled platform that is a true innovation partner to our customers and instilled a real purpose within our company to become a global leader in sustainability.”

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