Roden, fresh from BMS-Celgene merger, lands VC role at MPM

MPM Capital has hired Matthew Roden as executive partner. The role gives one of the driving forces behind Bristol Myers Squibb’s $74 billion takeover of Celgene the chance to help build biotechs.

Roden joined Bristol Myers in 2016 and was head of strategic corporate development and global business development assessment when it made its move for Celgene a few years later. By the time Bristol Myers closed the takeover late last year, Roden had stepped up to the post of head of strategy. Bristol Myers tasked Roden with delivering the initial strategic plan following its takeover of Celgene.

With Bristol Myers now working to integrate Celgene, Roden has decided his future lies outside of the company. MPM, which lists Pharmasset and Semma Therapeutics among its exits, has identified Roden as a good fit for its push to create a team capable of supporting its biotech-building program. 

“Our goal is to rival the expertise found on the senior teams of vertically integrated pharmaceutical companies so that our portfolio companies have in-house access to the deep knowledge and quality networks across every major step of company building and drug development,” Ansbert Gadicke, MPM co-founder and managing director, said in a statement. 

Roden, who got a Ph.D. through work on T-cell function, has spent most of his career on the money side of biopharma, most notably in a six-year stint handling biotech equity research at UBS. Bristol Myers lured Roden to Big Pharma in 2016, only for MPM to offer him the chance to write a new chapter in his career in VC four years later. 

During his four years at Bristol Myers, Roden worked on more than 100 business development deals valued at upward of $125 billion, a figure largely attributable to the megamerger with Celgene.