Founder-CEO or appointed-CEO?
Leadership session in cooperation with Global Investor Forum
Successful CEO-cum-founders are very rare. Usually founders pass on the reins to appointed-CEO’s somewhere down the line, not always voluntarily. Research show that by the time ventures are three years old, half of the founders were no longer the CEO. This is no different in Life Sciences and health. When is it wise to appoint a new CEO and when is the founder the right person to lead the company all the way to successful market introduction?
During Innovation for Health and Global Investor Forum on February 1st they have discussed this interesting leadership topic in a panel discussion with a.o. Onno van de Stolpe, founder and CEO of Galapagos, Erik van den Berg, CEO of AM-Pharma and co-founder of Lava Therapeutics and Edward van Wezel, Managing Partner at Biogeneration Ventures.
Onno van de Stolpe founded Galapagos in 1999 and has served as Chief Executive Officer and a member of the board of directors from 1999 to the present. From 1998 to 1999, he was the Managing Director of Genomics at IntroGene B.V. (later Crucell N.V., which was acquired by Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc. in 2011). Prior to joining IntroGene in 1998, he was Managing Director of Molecular Probes Europe B.V. He established this European headquarters after joining Molecular Probes, Inc. in the United States. Previously, he worked for The Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency in California, where he was responsible for recruiting biotechnology and medical device companies to locate in The Netherlands. Mr. Van de Stolpe started his career as Manager of Business Development at MOGEN International N.V. in Leiden. He received an MSc degree from Wageningen University. Mr. Van de Stolpe currently also serves as a member of the supervisory board of the Stichting Institute for Human Organ and Disease Model Technologies and has previously served as a member of the board of directors of DCPrime B.V.
Edward van Wezel has extensive international expertise in small and large pharma and biotech companies. Edward currently serves on the the boards of Progentix Orthobiology, Synaffix, Cristal Therapeutics, Escalier Biosciences and Scenic Biotech. He previously served on the board of BioCeros (sold in 2011), NovioGendix (sold in 2015) and of Acerta Pharma (sold in 2016). Edward started his industrial career as process engineer for Chiron Inc. and working for Johnson & Johnson as project manager. At J&J he was responsible for preclinical and Phase II product development projects in the oncology franchise. In addition he was involved in in-licensing activities. Since 2000 he gained experience in several small start-up and early stage companies in the Netherlands. He was director business development at Pepscan Systems and managing director of Macrozyme. Edward holds a M.Sc in chemistry from the University of Utrecht and a M.Sc in biochemical engineering from the Delft University of Technology.
Erik has over seventeen years experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. He joined AM-Pharma in September 2007 as Chief Business Officer and became the company's CEO in 2011. Previously, as a Senior Executive at Organon (NL) he was responsible for leading the Company’s global biotechnology business development. At Organon, he also held European Business Development as well as Marketing and Sales roles relating to the Company’s biotechnology services. Prior to joining Organon, Erik worked in business and corporate development at the biotechnology company IsoTis, and as a Management Consultant at Arthur D. Little. Erik has been involved in the execution of over 20 transactions and partnerships and raised more than €130M in equity and debt financing for biotechnology companies. He is also the founder and board member of two high-tech start-up companies.
Anne Portwich, PhD, joined LSP in 2001. She became a Partner of the firm in 2011. Anne’s prime focus and responsibility within LSP is to invest in unlisted securities. Prior to joining LSP, Anne was a Scientist and Project Leader at OctoPlus, a Dutch company offering advanced research services to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Anne brings hands-on research and industry experience to the LSP team, as well as an analytical mind with great attention to detail. Among others, she currently serves as a Director of Sapiens Steering Brain Stimulation, a German company that is developing a brain implant to treat patients with Parkinson’s Disease. Anne has been directly involved in the establishment of a number of start-ups as well as in initiatives that support the growth of such companies. Anne is a jury member of New Venture, a business plan competition for start-up companies in the Netherlands as well as a member of the evaluation panel for Tekes’ Young Innovative Growth Companies (YIC) funding program in Finland. Anne obtained an MSc in biochemistry from the University of Hanover and received her PhD from the Max Planck-Institute of Marine Microbiology in Bremen. Anne lives near Leiden with her husband and son.
Marianne van der Steen is Professor of Entrepreneurship in Healthcare at the Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Maastricht University (MERLN). Her research focus is on biomedical entrepreneurship, specifically on the growth of ventures. At MERLN, Marianne is responsible for biomedical entrepreneurship education and valorization from the lab to a spin-off company. Marianne is part of the leadership team and start-up director of REGMED XB, a cross border consortium that translates groundbreaking RM technologies into commercial products and companies that will deliver cure and effective solutions for patients. Marianne is founder and managing director of the Global Investor Forum and the Global Scale Up Program. She is the founder and member of the advisory board of the MBI Life Sciences and Health.