Q: What is your best practice for preparing to present at investor conferences?
(A) Every investor conference is unique because the psychology of the financial markets is constantly changing. Presenting at JP Morgan is no different from any other investor presentation. What is different is the size of the attendee universe. From my experience as former CEO of Chimerix, the focus was on assuring our message was consistent: We completed a successful IPO in April 2013, initiated enrollment of phase 3 SUPPRE SS trial of brincidofovir, and anticipated data in mid-2015. Our focus was on the competitive advantages of the candidate, as well as the recent hire of a chief commercial officer to facilitate brincidofovir’s commercial positioning. Strive to provide complete and accurate information, so investors, sell-side analysts, and bankers know your goal is to communicate openly and effectively.
Kenneth Moch, former CEO of Chimerix, has 30 years of experience creating, managing, and financing biomedical companies. In addition to Chimerix, Moch has been CEO of several other companies, including Alteon and Biocyte, and he cofounded The Liposome Company (acquired by Elan).
Q: What do you see as an exciting development toward improving pharma manufacturing efficiency?
(A) Traditional raw material specification and parameters to define quality might include variables such as particle size, water content, density, and composition. It is increasingly recognized that additional information such as particle shape and surface properties, powder cohesion, bulk permeability, and shear properties are critical to product function and manufacturing efficiency. The sharing of this additional information could help minimize capital equipment spend, reduce product development times, mitigate batch variability, and optimize QA/QC. The most efficient way to share this information is through a centralized database, which, until recently, did not exist. The National Institute for Pharmaceutical Technology and Education (NIPTE) created pharmaHUB — an FDA excipients knowledge base offering public visitors access to a range of material properties. However, for the database to achieve its full potential, we need to ensure material properties are well defined and reliably collated.
Tim Freeman is managing director for powder characterization company Freeman Technology. He has 10+ years of experience in understanding and characterizing powder behavior and works closely with the pharmaceutical and powder processing industries.
Q: What is the best leadership advice you ever received?
(A) A The best advice I received early in my career came from Victor Bauer, Ph.D. At the time, he was president of the U.S. division for Hoechst-Roussel Pharmaceuticals, and I was running the cardiovascular laboratory in Bridgewater, NJ. I had been with the company for only about three years when he called to tell me there was an opportunity in clinical pharmacology in the clinical research department that I should consider. When I asked why he thought this to be a good move, he replied, “Be open to new opportunities to better understand all aspects of the business.” This led to many opportunities to expand my experience in both the pharmaceutical and CRO industries. He opened the door for me, but I needed to step through and be open to learning new things.
Dr. John Hubbard is senior VP and worldwide head of development operations for Pfizer. In this position, he is responsible for global clinical trial management from Phase 1 to 4, which includes more than 700 clinical projects.