Sanofi-aventis and Merck & Co. Inc. have appointed Raul E. Kohan as chief executive officer of its proposed joint animal health venture. The firm, Merial-Intervet would combine Merial and Intervet/Schering-Plough.

Kohan is currently president of Merck’s animal health business, Intervet/Schering-Plough, and will begin his new responsibilities when the new venture receives regulatory approval and closes, expected in the first quarter of 2011.

He joined Schering-Plough in 1984 and has since held positions of increasing responsibility. He served as deputy head of animal health and senior vice president, corporate excellence and administrative services for Schering-Plough Corporation. Kohan graduated from the General San Martin Military Academy, Argentina, and holds an M.B.A. degree in economics from the University of Buenos Aires.