Novavax veteran lines up as next president of Icon’s ClinicalRM

The Dublin-headquartered company.

Icon has hired a retired colonel who is moving into the biotech sphere as new president of its subsidiary ClinicalRM. James Cummings, M.D., will lead the CRO’s unit, which helps provide research to a range of U.S. federal health agencies.

Cummings’ experience is predominately as a vaccine and infectious disease specialist, and he most recently led the influenza-related program at Novavax Inc., where he was VP of clinical development and translational medicine.

He replaces ClinicalRM’s founder and CEO, Victoria Tifft, who “will transition her leadership role throughout Q1 2018,” according to Icon’s statement, and moves into the ClinicalRM board as a nonexecutive director as of next month.


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Colin Stanley, president of Icon’s functional services said, “I am pleased that James has joined ClinicalRM to lead the company’s next stage of development and that Vicki will continue to provide guidance as a valuable member of the ClinicalRM Board.

“James’ knowledge of the industry, operational experience and understanding of research will help Icon expand in the government research sector. Furthermore, his expertise will strengthen Icon’s capabilities in vaccines and infectious disease, both of which are important areas of focus for government and commercial customers.”

Cummings said he is “excited to take on this unique challenge to combine ClinicalRM’s extensive sector experience and reputation, with ICON’s broad, global capabilities to provide a differentiated service offering to federal health agencies. I look forward to working with Vicki, the ClinicalRM Board and the wider ICON team to broaden and deepen our relationships with federal and commercial research sponsors.”

Icon, which also presented at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco this week, also released its full-year guidance for 2018, with its revenue estimates in the range of $1.87 billion to $1.93 billion, a growth of 7% to 10%. It also sees an effective tax rate cut of around 12%, after the government’s tax reforms. Deals and share buybacks are also on the cards for the year.   

"We expect 2018 to be another strong year of revenue and earnings progression for Icon. The momentum created by our positive business win trends has helped diversify our business by adding new sponsors and partnerships across all customer segments. Consequently we expect revenue to grow by 7%-10% to a range of $1,870-$1,930 million whilst reducing our full year concentration of our largest customer to circa 12%–14%," CEO Steve Cutler said. "Furthermore, by leveraging our support infrastructure, we aim to continue our best in industry cost management approach and expect earnings per share to increase by 10%–13% to a range of $5.89-$6.09. In addition to this organic growth, we will continue to focus on deploying capital to maximize shareholder value through a combination of M&A and share repurchases."

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