ZURICH Nestle NESN.VX said it will appoint Swiss scientist Stefan Catsicas as its new technology chief, as the world's biggest food group expands in health and nutrition.
Catsicas, who began his career as drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline's (GSK.L) head of neurosciences and was later a professor of cellular engineering, will replace current technology head Werner Bauer, who retires in August.
Vevey-based Nestle is increasingly linking up food and science with its Health Science unit, set up in 2011 as the Swiss group seeks to profit from growing demand for medical foods from an ageing population.
In February, Nestle said it would buy U.S. company Pamlab, which makes medical foods for patients with conditions including diabetic peripheral neuropathy, dementia, depression and high-risk pregnancy.
That deal followed a stake purchase in U.S. firm Accera, which makes a medical food brand for Alzheimer's patients, last year.
"Bringing together his extensive experience in academia, open innovation and business, Stefan Catsicas has the right competences to reinforce and advance our unmatched research and development capabilities and bring them to new levels of achievement," Nestle Chief Executive Paul Bulcke said in a statement on Friday.
(Reporting by Katharina Bart; Editing by Mark Potter)