* Names former FDA Commissioner Andrew von Eschenbach
* Also names Hans Peter Hasler, former Biogen COO
* Announcements follow years of shareholder pressure
Sept 15 Elan Corp Plc ELN.I named two new
non-executive directors to its board -- Dr. Andrew von
Eschenbach, a former commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug
Administration, and Hans Peter Hasler, former chief operating
officer at biotechnology company Biogen Idec Inc (BIIB.O).
The company also said Shane Cooke, the company's former
chief financial officer, would retire from the board.
The announcement follows years of pressure from Elan
investors who accused the board of lacking relevant expertise
Amid much battling, last September the company succeeded in
forcing two directors who had challenged its transparency and
corporate governance practices to quit the board.
Elan and Biogen jointly make and sell the multiple
sclerosis drug Tysabri. During his time at Biogen, which
culminated in becoming COO, Hasler served as head of
international business overseeing the launch of Tysabri in
Elan's relationship with Biogen has historically been
troubled. Last July, a new chief executive, George Scangos,
took over at Biogen. Scangos said in a recent interview that
the relationship with Elan was now smooth.
(Reporting by Toni Clarke)