Medicine man out to heal ProSieben


Thomas Ebeling, the former CEO of pharmaceutical giant Novartis Consumer Health, will take over the top job at troubled Pan- European broadcaster ProSiebenSat.1.

Ebeling will replace Guillaume de Posch, who resigns at year's end, ProSieben said Tuesday. Company CFO Axel Salzmann will act as provisional chief executive until Ebeling takes over March 1.

Ebeling will have the unenviable job of trying to turn around ProSieben after a disastrous year that has seen profit slump, debt surge and its share price collapse. ProSieben shares jumped 7.5% on news of his appointment, but at €1.44 ($1.80) the stock is down more than 90% from last year.

While he has no direct media industry experience, Ebeling said he brings with him "20 years dealing with the media" as an executive in companies from Pepsi Cola Germany, where he served as GM, to Novartis, where as CEO from 2000-07 he oversaw a doubling of corporate revenue to $22.6 billion. (partialdiff)