Chutes & Ladders: Cornelius named CEO of BMS

This morning's news about the Pfizer pact was part of a carefully orchestrated trifecta of upbeat announcements, as the troubled Bristol-Myers Squibb plotted a course that would allow it to turn the proverbial corner on its recent woes. In addition to the Pfizer pact, BMS said that James Cornelius, the company's interim CEO, was going to keep the title. And BMS announced that its first quarter earnings beat analysts' estimates, a sign that it may be recovering from a round of generic competition for the Plavix market. Quarterly profits hit 38 cents a share, excluding certain items, handily beating out an average of 24 cents estimated by top analysts. Cornelius has a long resume, with past stints as CEO of Guidant, CFO at Eli Lilly and president of IVAC. He takes the place of Peter Dolan, who was fired after a secret deal aimed at delaying a generic competitor to Plavix blew up in his face.

- see the company's statement on Cornelius' appointment
- here's a report on the numbers from MarketWatch