Allergan on Thursday said that former Abbott Laboratories executive Thomas Freyman will be joining its board with immediate effect. CEO Brent Saunders remarked “[Freyman] has nearly four decades of industry experience including finance leadership and serving on multiple public boards, making him a highly valuable addition to the Allergan board of directors.” The drugmaker also noted that current board member Patrick O’Sullivan, who joined the board in 2013, following the company’s purchase of Warner Chilcott, is stepping down next month.
Allergan stated that Mr. Freyman retired from Abbott last year after most recently serving as the company’s executive vice president of finance and administration. Mr. Freyman was initially named Abbott’s chief financial officer and senior vice president of finance in 2001.
Allergan’s lead independent director Chris Coughlin remarked “Mr. Freyman will become the fourth new director joining the Allergan board in 16 months as we continue to recruit highly-experienced and qualified members to bring a diversity of perspectives and strengthen the board with additional industry, scientific and financial experience.”
The news comes after Appaloosa Management and Senator Investment Group urged Allergan to divide the roles of chief executive and chairman and reconsider its acquisition strategy. The investors have also indicated that Allergan should replace at least two additional directors on the board members, in addition to the three new members appointed over the last 16 months. More recently, sources disclosed that investor Carl Icahn purchased a small stake in the company.