Cultivating the next generation of life science CEOs - 18/11/14

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Bailey Fisher Executive Search is partnering with Silicon Valley Bank to host an evening of discussion on ‘Cultivating the next generation of life science CEOs & entrepreneurs’.

We are delighted to announce Fiona Marshall and Melanie Lee as our speakers.

Fiona Marshall is a co-founder and CSO of Heptares Therapeutics – a Drug Discovery and Development company which spun out of the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge. She has more than 25 years’ experience in drug discovery, having held senior positions with GSK and Millennium Pharmaceuticals. Fiona also spent 5 years as an independent consultant to a variety of venture capital and biotech companies. She is currently Vice Chair of the Wellcome Trust Seeding Drug Discovery committee and an advisor to Cancer Research UK and MRC Technology.  She is a Fellow of both the British Pharmacological Society and the Society of Biology and is on the Board of Trustees of Alzheimer’s Research UK.

Melanie Lee is currently CEO of NightstaRx, a Syncona Partners company and works part time as Chief Science Officer for BTGplc.  Prior to this Melanie served as CEO of Syntaxin, a highly successful biotech spin out, and held senior positions with UCB, Celltech and GlaxoWellcome. With over 20 years’ experience in the pharmaceutical industry, Melanie’s career began as a laboratory bench level scientist starting in Glaxo. She now holds voluntary positions which combine her knowledge of industrial drug R&D and academic science, as Chairman of Cancer Research Technology and as a Trustee and Deputy Chairman of Cancer Research UK. She was been a Non-Executive Director of BTG plc since 2010 and resigned this post in September 2014 to take up the Exec CSO position. Melanie has also been an NED for Denmark based H. Lundbeck A/S since 2012. Melanie founded Think10, a life science business consultancy offering coaching and development services to individuals and the pharmaceutical industry.

The issue – Bioscience innovation is increasing in importance:

  • Large pharma continue to cut back on core R&D and look to independent  companies to provide them with a product pipeline;
  • Ageing and wealthier populations are increasing the prevalence of certain diseases;
  • Technical developments in genomics, sequencing and analytics are opening the door to an era of personalised medicine;
  • Cost pressures on private and public health care systems are requiring efficient and best in value products and services.

Despite these trends, the avenues for the next generation of bio entrepreneurs to equip themselves with the skills, network and capabilities to become industry leaders, are restricted.

The continuing investment from private and public investors and Government is welcome but simple company formation alone will not address some of the leadership gaps for next generation of leaders.

A solution?

How can these development pathways that existed in big pharma be recreated? Collaboration between companies, individuals and specialists can provide the support, signposting and development for future leaders.

This event aims to begin the discussion around who is in the ecosystem in terms of making introductions and providing support, and actively thinking of how we go about filling this capability and competence gap.

This peer-to-peer event will consider how scientists can gain commercial knowledge to become effective leaders, to both cultivate the next generation of CEOs, whilst also enhancing the skill set of first time CEOs.

Attendance at this event is by invitation.  If you are interested in finding out more about future events in this series, please contact Claire Button, Associate Life Sciences & Healthcare

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