GLOBAL - Petra Zamagna, head of benefits finance and asset management for pension and saving plans at pharmaceuticals group Sanofi-Aventis, has stepped down as she prepares to leave the company.

Benefits finance co-ordinator Dominique Schutz has also stepped down. His successor will take up the post in the news few weeks.

Zamagna has been replaced by Wolfgang Weber, who has worked seven years for the finance department at the group, the world’s third biggest drug maker.

In his new capacity, Weber heads a team of three and is involved with the management of a total of E8bn pension and saving plans.

He told IPE that his role included taking management and asset allocation decisions for the group’s benefit plans, which are split in pension plans, worth a global E5bn and saving plans, worth E3bn.

Weber explained Sanofi-Aventis only acts as an asset manager to the funds paid by employees, although he added the group sometimes also makes contributions. Pension plans, on the other hand, represent an explicit promise for provisions.

He added that he took financial decisions regarding the benefits plans with investment committees representing benefit schemes in each country where the group is present.

It is not clear whether Zamagna has already set a date for her departure from Sanofi-Aventis or whether she has new professional projects.