Chutes & Ladders: Syntimmune taps Boehringer, Pfizer vet as new CEO

Chutes and Ladders

Welcome to this week's Chutes and Ladders, our roundup of hirings, firings and retirings throughout the industry. Please send the good word—or the bad—from your shop to Eric Sagonowsky or Angus Liu, and we will feature it here at the end of each week.

Syntimmune appoints Boehringer, Pfizer alum David de Graaf CEO

SyntimmuneDavid de Graaf

David de Graaf joins as CEO.

New York-based Syntimmune recently took in the final $8 million of the total $26 million for its Series A and named, at the same time, a partner from Apple Tree Partners—which co-led the company’s first round of financing—as its CEO. David de Graaf, the newly appointed Syntimmune CEO, also happens to have much experience in the biopharma industry, having held leadership titles at Boehringer Ingelheim, Pfizer and AstraZeneca. De Graaf will be leading the company in advancing its lead clinical candidate, SYNT001, which targets IgG-mediated autoimmune diseases by blocking FcRn-IgG interactions. FierceBiotech article

Gilead promotes James Meyers to EVP of worldwide commercial operations

GileadJames Meyers

James Meyers is promoted to EVP.

Gilead has promoted James Meyers, its SVP of North American commercial operations since 2007, to EVP of worldwide commercial operations. He will be responsible for the company’s commercial operations in North America, Europe and Japan. The appointment came just days after Gilead released its lackluster third quarter figures. Even though its HIV meds performed well, sales for the hepatitis C blockbusters plummeted more than 30 percent for the quarter. Jumping ship from AstraZeneca, Meyers joined Gilead in 1996 first as a regional sales director. During his 20 years at Gilead, he has been crucial in the company’s launches of products in HIV, oncology, cardiovascular, respiratory and liver diseases. Release | Read more on FiercePharma

IDEXX Laboratories bids farewell to EVP Michael Williams, welcomes new marketing head

IDEXXMichael Williams

Michael Williams steps down as EVP and will leave soon.

Veterinary expert IDEXX Laboratories has announced that its EVP Michael Williams is stepping down from his current role within November. He will leave the company next February to begin “a new, entrepreneurial chapter of his career,” said the company’s Chairman and CEO Jonathan Ayers. Williams has been with the company for 14 years and has made contributions in building the IDEXX’s in-house chemistry franchise, leading its global VetLab business. He has also supported product innovation and spearheaded its international business. His responsibilities will be shared between two corporate VPs Kathy Turner and Olivier te Boekhorst. The company has also recruited Pat Venters, a healthcare technology vet previously with Philips Healthcare and GE Healthcare, as VP and Chief Marketing Officer. Release

Biogen recruits two execs for to-be-launched hemophilia spinoff Bioverativ


Rogerio Vivaldi

Rogerio Vivaldi will serve as Bioverativ’s chief global therapeutic operations officer.

Biogen hasn’t wasted time in preparation for the launch of its hemophilia spinoff Bioverativ in early 2017. It has tapped Rogerio Vivaldi as the new stand-alone company’s chief global therapeutic operations officer and John Greene as its CFO. The company will start with two approved hemophilia drugs, Alprolix and Electate, which generated $500 million in revenue in 2015. It will be helmed by John Cox, Biogen’s former executive vice president of pharmaceutical operations and technology. Vivaldi’s job description includes leading all aspects of Bioverativ’s commercial activities, including sales and marketing. Release

> Timothy Rodell has resigned from his positions as the GlobeImmune’s president and CEO just as Gilead terminated the license agreement with the company of rights to the latter’s GS-4774. FierceBiotech

> Asterias Biotherapeutics, a company working in the field of regenerative medicine, has appointed Ryan Chavez as CFO. Release

> Calimmune taps Dr. Salim Yazji, former VP and global therapeutics head of oncology at Baxalta, as its EVP and CMO. Release

> Dr. Lisa Rojkjaer, Novartis’ former global clinical program head of oncology global development, jumps ship to Nordic Nanovector and becomes its CMO. Release

> Rigontec GmbH appoints drug R&D vet Jörg Vollmer as its new CSO. Release