An enduring emphasis on innovation and its strong family culture has seen Merck lead the global healthcare and chemicals industry for countless decades, building on a legacy that stretches back nearly 350 years.

The company’s executive board consists of five people, led by the chairman of the executive board, Karl-Ludwig Kley. Merck also runs two chemicals divisions. The company’s two pharmaceuticals divisions are headed by Stefan Oschmann, who joined the company in 2011.

Delivering vital health solutions through its prescription medicines, biologic therapies, and over-the-counter drugs, Merck’s two pharmaceutical divisions Merck Serono (prescription drugs) and Consumer Health (over-the-counter medicines) have been protecting and preserving the health of people around the world. The Merck Serono division offers treatments for debilitating diseases like multiple sclerosis and some types of cancer.

The CEO Magazine spoke to Stefan Oschmann, CEO of Merck, about the two divisions’ impressive longevity and evolution in this intensely competitive space.

The CEO Magazine: What did you see as your primary objectives when you joined the organisation in 2011?

Stefan: I had been working at a different large pharmaceutical company for 21 years and I joined Merck in January 2011. That was obviously during a period of crisis within the pharmaceutical industry. We are quite a special company. We are the oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company in the world, founded in 1668.