Lonza – Global Head of Hydrazine

client success story

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  • Founded 1897
  • Biotechnology, Pharmaceuticals, Specialty Chemicals
  • Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland
  • 10,000+ Employees Globally
  • Subsidiaries: Capsugel, BacThera AG, InterHealth Nutraceuticals, Inc.
  • Estimated 5+ Billion in Revenue

Founded in 1897 in the Swiss Alps, Lonza today is a well-respected global company with approximately 40 major manufacturing and R&D facilities and more than 15,500 full-time employees worldwide. The company generated sales of 5+ billion USD in 2021 and is organized into two market-focused segments: Pharma & Biotech and Specialty Ingredients.

Lonza is one of the world’s leading and most trusted suppliers to the pharmaceutical, biotech, and specialty ingredients markets. They harness science and technology to create products that support safer and healthier living and enhance the overall quality of life.


Lonza had no prepared succession candidate to take over from their retiring Global Head of Hydrazine. With big shoes to fill, Lonza needed a candidate with a proven track record of negotiating government contracts and a minimum of 10+ years of experience in the chemical industry. It was crucial to identify someone who could seamlessly integrate into the culture and deliver targeted sales volumes, margins, EBIT, and working capital targets for the Hydrazine business.

Ropella leveraged its ideal leadership hiring model, the SMART Search System, to launch a search and, within weeks, had a pool of best-in-class candidates with extensive niche business experience, including responsibility for production, marketing, pricing, purchasing, and supply chain. Ropella quickly sourced a highly specialized candidate who impressed the firm as the “perfect fit” for the Global Head of Hydrazine. This person promptly demonstrated direction and strategy to develop and execute the business plans for Lonza’s Hydrazine portfolio.

Custom-created for Lonza, the Opportunity Marketing Piece attracted passive (employed and not looking) candidates from a select group of highly-targeted companies. The Opportunity Marketing Piece enabled Ropella’s Executive Search Consultants to present a world-class overview of Lonza, the unique challenges facing the new Global Head of Hydrazine, and the incredible opportunity to work in a fast-paced, positive environment.


This custom-created Skill Survey equipped Ropella’s Executive Search Consultants to effectively gather information from a large pool of candidates. This step was critical to identify and select the most qualified A-players for final submission.


Ropella thoughtfully scored all candidates during the screening and interview process, using a custom-created Scorecard. These scores determined each candidate’s skills and experience, cultural dynamic, management style, compensation, relocation fit, and other attributes.


Ropella’s proprietary Compensation Comparison Calculator compiles a variety of complex compensation factors into a concise Offer Strategy Summary, thereby ensuring that clients don’t lose the perfect candidate to ineffective “negotiations” and/or a current employer counteroffer or other “competing” offers.


Results Delivered

Ropella identified and engaged with 98 prospects on behalf of Lonza. From there, Ropella submitted 8 candidates, 4 of whom were interviewed.

17 Business Days
To Qualified Candidates

After assessing and identifying the two finalists, Lonza chose an expertly matched candidate from Ropella for Global Head of Hydrazine. Lonza utilized Ropella’s Compensation Comparison Calculator and supporting Offer Strategy Summary to create an appealing executive compensation package, which the candidate accepted. The New Global Head of Hydrazine has been developing, recommending, and executing strategic plans to achieve key sales and financial targets based on market intelligence for the Hydrazine business.