A day after Sanofi announced a diabetes alliance with Medtronic Inc., its research chief said the Paris-based drugmaker may seek other partnerships to expand in one of the fastest-growing medical conditions.
The decision by Sanofi Chief Executive Officer Chris Viehbacher to relocate to the Boston area could fuel concern by the French government that the nation is losing influence over its biggest companies.
Sanofi, France’s biggest drugmaker, is advancing its overhaul of research and development, with the goal of becoming the industry leader in bringing new medicines to market, said Elias Zerhouni, the president of global R&D.
Sanofi, France’s biggest drugmaker, told employees it will proceed with plans to end research operations in Toulouse, on the same day PSA Peugeot Citroen said it would shut its first car factory in the country in 20 years.
Sanofi said profit may drop as much as 5 percent this year as generic competition to the Plavix blood thinner crimps sales and it spends to introduce new medicines. The stock fell the most in nine months.
Sanofi-Aventis SA named Elias Zerhouni head of research and development, replacing Marc Cluzel , a further step in Chief Executive Officer Chris Viehbacher ’s reorganization of France’s biggest drugmaker.
Few government programs seem as sacrosanct as funding for medical research. Despite continuing U.S. budget constraints, both Democrats and Republicans regularly pledge to increase funding for the National Institutes of Health and other government medical research.