UPDATED: Pfizer's David Simmons joins PPD as new CEO and chairman

David Simmons, a former Pfizer ($PFE) executive and general manager, will join Pharmaceutical Product Development (PPD) as its new chairman and CEO June 4, the CRO announced Wednesday.

Simmons will succeed Ray Hill, who resigned from the position in December following a three-month tenure and PPD's $3.9 billion acquisition by the Carlyle Group and Hellman & Friedman.

"We are pleased to welcome David to PPD," said Stephen H. Wise, managing director of the Carlyle Group and PPD board member, in a company statement. "David is a proven leader whose deep industry knowledge and vision will enable PPD to further its partnerships with pharmaceutical and biotech companies around the globe."

Simmons will join PPD following 15 years at Pfizer, where he served in numerous roles, most recently as president and GM of the pharma giant's emerging markets and established products business units, notably with its biosimilar development program. While PPD's announcement doesn't mention any experience in contract research, his work in Pfizer's IT and pharmaceutical operations stood out to PPD board members in their search to find a new CEO.

"He has not worked at a CRO to our knowledge, but he has 15 years in the industry and extenstive international experience, and I think those were two qualities the board looked for," said PPD spokesman Ned Glascock. "I think the board felt he was a tremendous fit for our organization."

- read PPD's announcement

Editor's Note: This story was updated to include comments from PPD.

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