02 October 2003 | David Arminas
Clive Heal has been appointed senior director of global procurement at Genentech, a leading American gene research and biotechnology company.
Heal moves from insurance company Prudential, where he has been head of group procurement for the past three years.
He was headhunted and chosen above many US professionals for the prestigious job, based in San Francisco.
Genentech has 5,000 employees and Heal will be responsible for a purchasing budget of around $1 billion, for indirect and direct materials.
Heal trained as a chemist but early in his career switched to sales and then purchasing.
"Genentech senior management includes some of North America's most highly qualified academic, scientific and technical people," he told SM. "There is a move to get more commercial and business acumen spreading through purchasing and to other departments to make the company's supply chain more competitive."
Heal went through 14 interviews, the first in the UK last March. Over several days at Genentech headquarters, he had other interviews with people to whom he was to report and work with as well as with people who would report to him.
It is unusual for a US firm with no UK presence to appoint a UK professional, according to Charles Bolam, a consultant at recruitment agency CP Executive Search & Selection.
"It looks like a feather in the cap for UK purchasers," he said.
Because of the new job, which he starts this month, Heal has stepped down from his post as chairman-elect of CIPS's board of management.