Press Releases

Hill's Pet Nutrition and Merck Animal Health Executives to Lead Kansas City Animal Health Corridor Board

KANSAS CITY, Mo., Oct. 9, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The KC Animal Health Corridor Advisory Board voted to appoint Kostas Kontopanos, U.S. president of Hill's Pet Nutrition as chair, effective January 1. The Board also approved the appointment of Scott Bormann, vice president, U.S. commercial operations of Merck Animal Health, as vice chair.

With a spate of recent announcements, the KC Animal Health Corridor initiative has resulted in close to 1,300 new jobs and nearly $1 billion in capital investment for the Kansas City region. The program promotes the KC region as the center of the animal health industry with one third of the sales for the $19 billion industry originating from companies located within the Corridor. This represents the largest animal health industry concentration in the world.

"The appointment of Kostas as chair and head of a global pet nutrition company based in Topeka, Kansas, and Scott as vice-chair illustrates the geographic reach of the Corridor and the variety of assets located here.  We welcome their leadership as the Corridor continues to grow," said Kim Young, vice president of bioscience development for the Kansas City Area Development Council.

Kontopanos' role as chair of the KC Animal Health Corridor Advisory Board will be to act as the primary point of contact for industry, news media and civic leadership. He will also be responsible for leading board decision-making and Corridor strategy development.

"Hill's has called Kansas home for more than 60 years. We wholeheartedly support and have leveraged the rich heritage of animal health, innovation, research and collaborative assets that make the Corridor unique. I welcome the opportunity to lead the Advisory Board and look forward to our new opportunities ahead," said Kontopanos, Corridor board chair.

Bormann will act as a secondary point of contact as he spends the next 12 months integrating with board leadership, Corridor activities and regional industry leadership.

"Merck Animal Health's goals are in alignment with the Corridor's goals. We recognize the region's rich heritage and I welcome the opportunity to not only help promote, but grow it even more," said Scott Bormann, Corridor vice-chair.

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About the KC Animal Health Corridor
The Kansas City area accounts for 32 percent of the $19 billion global animal health industry. The Corridor, anchored by Manhattan, Kan., and Columbia, Mo., is home to more than 220 animal health companies, which represents the largest concentration in the world.

About Hill's Pet Nutrition
Hill's Pet Nutrition Inc. manufactures Hill's® Prescription Diet® brand pet foods, therapeutic pet foods available only through veterinarians, and Hill's® Science Diet® brand pet foods sold through veterinarians and finer pet specialty stores.

About Merck Animal Health
Merck Animal Health is dedicated to preserving and improving the health, well-being and performance of animals. It invests extensively in dynamic and comprehensive R&D resources and a modern, global supply chain.

SOURCE KC Animal Health Corridor