Jeremy Scudamore has been named the new non-executive chairman of UK group SkyePharma, taking over from Dr Jerry Karabelas, who remains as a non-executive director of the firm, on October 15.

Sixty-year-old Scudamore brings over 35 years’ experience in the life sciences industry to his role, and is also currently a non-executive director of Stem Cell Sciences plc and Oxford Catalysts Group plc.

Commenting on his appointment, Karabelas said that Scudamore is joining SkyePharma as Non-Executive Chairman at “an exciting time for the company”, and that he brings with him “a wealth of knowledge and experience of large and small companies in the life science and technology sectors.”

In early 2006, Karabelas survived a bid by disgruntled shareholders to throw him off the throne in a protest against the firm’s failure to find a buyer when it put itself up for sale the year before coupled with accusations of the company’s management being wasteful in its spending, self-serving and failing to make the most of its assets.

In September, the group booked an 8% drop in sales to £19.7 million for the first six months of the year, and forecast flat revenues for the second half.