A new CEO joins the select number of women at the head of drugmakers in Argentina. María Sol Quibel (39) has taken the helm at Germany’s Merck in the country. The executive takes the place of Cristian von Schulz-Hausmann who moves to Merck’s Mexican office.

Germany’s Merck broke the status quo by picking Belén Garijo as its global CEO from May 1.

Now, just two months later, its Argentine office is following the disruptive line, appointing María Sol Quibel as the local number one. Not yet 40, Quibel led the local Oncology division from 2019, after jumping into the segment a decade ago after a tour through GSK, Shire and BMS.

As managing director of the local branch, she will lead the Healthcare business for Southern Cone, which includes Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay and Bolivia. She replaces Cristianvon Schulz-Hausmann.

She leaves behind management of the Oncology division, where she occupied several positions after joining as a brand manager in 2015. Four years ago, she served in a global position based in Germany.

Her previous position will now be taken by Marcelo Ponte. The doctor, who began his career in the area of internal medicine at Argerich Hospital, joined Merck in 2018 after specializing in clinical pharmacology; drug surveillance; and pharmacoeconomics. Now he will oversee brands such as Erbitux and Bavencio -in conjunction with Pfizer-.

Meanwhile, the change of CEO comes after Cristian von Schulz-Hausmann was promoted to general manager of Merck Mexico, following again in the steps of his own predecessor in Argentina, José Arnaud de Carvalho Coelho, who has moved to lead Merck’s Brazil office.

In addition to von Schulz-Hausmann and Carvalho Coelho, Quibel’s peers on the continent are: Jessica Jirash, in Chile; Valeria Kyska, in the cluster comprising Colombia and Ecuador. There’s also Vanessa Vertiz, in Peru; and Juan Cruz Álvarez García, in Central America and the Caribbean.

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