Albert Bourla was nominated at the beginning of October by Pfizer’s Board of Directors as the new CEO of the company; he will succeed to Ian Read starting from 1st January 2019. The change in leadership is part of a multi-year succession planning process, according to Shantanu Narayen, Lead independent director of the Board of Directors.

Albert Bourla, 56, is currently Pfizer’s Chief operating officer (COO); he also run the Innovative Health business, establishing the Innovative Health Emerging Markets region. In January 2014 he became the group president of the Vaccines, Oncology and Consumer Healthcare business unit.

After the transition, Ian Read will assume the role of Executive Chairman of Pfizer’s Board of Directors; he served as CEO since December 2010.