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Elan Corporation Turnaround


The case begins with newly appointed chairman and interim CEO Garo Armen dwelling on the significant issues that Elan Corporation, an Irish pharmaceutical company, faces. Its share price has plummeted 96% after accusations of accounting fraud and the discontinuation of an important clinical trial due to the drug's severe side effects. As a result, Elan faces insolvency. About $2 billion in debt that could no longer be satisfied in stock will soon mature, and there are questions regarding the company's structure and various operating concerns. Armen is also concerned about the ethical consequences of the company's failing and thus not being able to develop potentially life-saving medicines.

Armen must decide what the nature of Elan should be moving forward and what strategy it should adopt. The operational and financial issues discussed in the case are complicated by Elan's status as an Irish company with significant international operations. The case closes with Armen reflecting on the decisions he has made—which students should critique and suggest alternatives to—as well as an open decision on choosing a successor CEO.




James B. Shein, Robert Anstey, Nathan Lang

Date Published



Shein, B. James, Robert Anstey, and Nathan Lang. Elan Corporation Turnaround. Case 5-210-262 (KEL507).


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