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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Two Former Cabinet Ministers Tapped to Run ICN Divisions

ICN Pharmaceuticals Inc. has appointed two former Russian Cabinet ministers to run its operations in Eastern Europe and its U.S. public relations, chief executive Milan Panic said Tuesday.

Andrei Kozyrev, liberal foreign minister from 1990 to 1996, becomes vice president and general manager for Eastern Europe effective Tuesday. He has been a member of ICN's board for the last two years.

Sergei Gryzunov, a former media minister, was appointed vice president for public relations in the United States, Panic said at a news conference. Gryzunov had been vice president for public relations and communications in Europe.

California-based ICN produces every fifth pill in Russia, although it only holds 7 percent of the market in dollar terms, as its products are relatively inexpensive, Panic said.

Panic is a former prime minister of Yugoslavia. He said the company was doing well in Russia despite the lingering effects of the 1998 financial crisis. Fourth-quarter sales in Russia rose to a near record of about $30 million from $18 million in the third quarter, he said. ICN total third-quarter sales were $148 million, and total revenues were $182 billion for the period.

"I hope the crisis for ICN in Russia is over," Panic said.

ICN, which employs 8,000 people in Russia, has controlling stakes in five pharmaceutical factories in the country. Gryzunov said ICN had identified a research institute in Moscow that would conduct research for ICN.

However, Panic said further investment in Russia was unlikely.

Kozyrev said ICN expected Russia's economy to grow before year-end, boosting Eastern Europe as a consequence, if acting President Vladimir Putin won the March 26 presidential election.