Harry Jansen Kraemer Jr. will resign as chairman and CEO of Baxter International, Deerfield, Ill., as soon as a successor is named, officials said. Kraemer, 49, said he is stepping down in light of "the challenges the company has faced during the last year." Kraemer, who has been with Baxter for more than 20 years, was named CEO in 1999 and chairman in 2000. Officials said they would move quickly to identify a new CEO. Last summer, the pharmaceutical, device and biotechnology titan significantly reduced its plasma business and cut about 3,200 jobs -- nearly 6% of its workforce. Officials also revealed that the Securities and Exchange Commission was investigating earnings warnings issued by the company. Baxter will release its fourth-quarter and 2003 financial results Thursday. Officials said they expect the results to be in the range of the guidance the company provided in December 2003. -- by Cinda Becker
Baxter CEO to resign after company's rough year
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