UPS promotes Marken CEO to lead new Healthcare and Life Sciences unit

UPS tapped a leader to oversee the company’s new health-care initiatives.

United Parcel Service Inc. (NYSE: UPS) on Tuesday said it promoted Wes Wheeler to president of the company’s Healthcare and Life Sciences unit. The move is effective immediately.

The company announced plans in October to align all of its healthcare and life sciences operations and commercial groups within a single division. The HCLS unit aims to provide supply chain management, cold chain, clinical trials, global transportation and other critical healthcare service operations.

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Wheeler is CEO of Marken, a wholly-owned subsidiary of UPS that, along with Polar Speed and the company’s 114 healthcare-dedicated facilities, will be part of the HCLS. The unit’s dedicated salesforce and customer support teams will primarily be focused on pharmaceutical, biopharma and medical device companies.

UPS said Wheeler, who lives in North Carolina, is tasked with expanding HCLS services with “key investments, partnerships and technology that address unique customer needs in the healthcare and life science markets.”

Wheeler joined UPS as part of the company’s 2016 acquisition of Marken. His 40-year career includes leadership roles with Exxon Research and Engineering and Glaxo (now GlaxoSmithKline), and as CEO/president at four companies, including Patheon, Valeant, DSM Pharmaceuticals and Marken.

“We are pleased to appoint Wes to this very important leadership role,” said UPS chairman and CEO David Abney in a news release. “He has an impressive career and deep experience in the clinical trials, pharmaceutical, biotech and medical device industries. His expertise will complement our strategic healthcare growth and technology initiatives.”

UPS is banking on “precision logistics” to be a major component of its health-care push, and recently introduced new technology-enabled options for delivering healthcare packages. The Atlanta-based logistics giant is also adding more capacity to handle its recent health-care investment binge. The company says it currently has approximately eight million square feet of cGMP- or cGDP-compliant healthcare distribution space, as well as one of the world’s largest networks of field stocking locations.

Last month, UPS’ industry-first, hospital network-focused drone delivery program and CVS Health Corporation (NYSE: CVS) completed their first revenue-generating drone delivery of a medical prescription from a CVS pharmacy directly to a consumer’s home.

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