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Foggy Mountains

Case Studies

10+ years global business development and corporate strategy experience in the life science industry, including preclinical and clinical pharmaceuticals, industrial biotech, and medical devices, with proven ability to build commercial value.

Biotech Start-Up
Drug Discovery

STARTING A COMPANY FROM UNIVERSITY IP - BIOTECH SPINOUT

Introduction

I had the pleasure of working with inventors from the University of Michigan's Department of Chemical Engineering to help transform process IP developed at an academic lab into a commercial business. We co-founded our company with a mission to replace petrochemical-based plastics with biobased alternatives for the benefit of humanity. We interviewed as many stakeholders as possible to discover the right application at scale while deploying as little dilutive capital as possible (see "lean start-up methodology"), and create value for our partners and customers to form a viable business. Over four years, we built a team of 10 employees, raised over four million dollars in funding and attracted our first $1 million customer.

Actions Taken

  1. Designed and executed initial proof of concept studies while embarking on customer discovery efforts (including NSF I-Corps) to form value proposition

  2. Boosted credibility and visibility by hiring key consultants, full time employees (FTEs), and building website to increase digital footprint and capture leads

  3. Initiated communication and financing efforts, working on our story through pitch deck formation and seeking non-dilutive fundraising

  4. Established process that emphasized partnering and fundraising activities to supplement R&D funding with revenue from customers and equity investment

Results Achieved

  1. Build patent portfolio, in-licensing key University IP on a worldwide, exclusive basis for minimal upfront cash

  2. Increased traffic to our website to 1,000+ unique views per month and 600+ followers on major social media channels

  3. Awarded five government grants from three US government agencies ($2+ million)

  4. Signed multi-million dollar JDA with a global strategic investor, allowing the company to de-risk the technology and produce product prototypes at meaningful scale

Akzonobel_Imagine Chemistry_Drew & Jeremy.jpg

Ecovia won AkzoNobel's Imagine Chemistry Competition in 2017

Resources

EXECUTING ON BUSINESS MODEL WITH STRATEGIC PIVOT - PUBLIC PHARMA

Introduction

I was recruited by the Chief Strategy Officer to lead corporate development at a publicly-traded diversified diagnostic and therapeutic company developing first-in-class RAS-targeted and oligonucleotide therapeutics for oncology and infectious diseases. Due to the evolving landscape in Covid-19, we decided to deprioritize our lead program, an ssDNA oligonucleotide in development for the treatment of moderate and severe Covid-19 infection. Our goal was to pivot our business model, to develop and execute on an annual strategic plan (ASP) and long-range operating plan (LROP) for the therapeutics business while leveraging internal competencies and synergies within our pipeline.

Actions Taken

  1. Engaged third party consulting group to support development of the ASP and LROP, working with key stakeholders within our company and network

  2. Conducted SWOT analysis on core competencies, pipeline synergies, human resources, and capital deployment strategy over one- and five-year horizons

  3. Presented the plan to leadership and then to the board for approval

  4. Created quantitative screening framework to identify and prioritize potential in-licensing opportunities for anchor asset

  5. Sourced, negotiated, and closed deal for data package and IP supporting an IND-ready small molecule asset targeting rare oncology

Results Achieved

  1. With Chief Strategy Officer, co-developed and delivered board-approved Long-Range Operating Plan and Annual Strategic Plan

  2. Pivoted away from infectious disease with enhanced focus on developing potential first-in-class Orphan oncology therapeutics through Phase 2a Proof-of-Concept (POC)

  3. With President, identified and successfully in-licensed IND-stage small molecule targeting rare oncology from world-class academic institution; asset now in Phase 1 clinical development

  4. With leadership, built and delivered >$12 million annual strategic plan for three asset Orphan oncology portfolio

CREATING A NEW MODEL FOR DRUG DISCOVERY - PRECLINICAL PHARMA

Introduction

Under a leadership transition, Therapeutic Systems Research Laboratories (TSRL Inc.) hired me to help leverage its facility, equipment, and experience in pre-formulation and grant writing to create a new business model based around accelerating pre-clinical drug candidates to IND. The business was privately owned and highly consolidated, so I worked with the CEO to engage key stakeholders to receive the necessary support to successfully execute on the new direction. Over 24 months we increased our grant submission productivity by 300%, signing our first two major accounts and raising $4 million in non-dilutive grant funding from the NIH.

Actions Taken

  1. Conducted due diligence on current IP portfolio to understand internal strengths and weaknesses and catalogued internal systems and in-house assets

  2. Interviewed staff to understand core competencies and aligned staff to create a culture that emphasized continuous improvement ("Good to Great" methodology)

  3. Performed competitive analysis to create target product profiles (TPPs) and stakeholder maps and drafted a new business plan with the support of leadership

  4. Identified opportunities and developed complementary external partnerships to systematically apply and obtain non-dilutive grant funding to support R&D milestones

Results Achieved

  1. Awarded three government grants from the NIH-National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases that supported investigators from two large research universities and a small microneedle company

  2. Negotiated two spin-out asset LLCs, an out-license agreement, and multiple low-cost option agreements to develop preclinical assets

  3. Launched new website and created platform- and asset-specific marketing and pitch materials to attract 20+ viable leads/month

TSRL Booth.JPG

TSRL's Booth at Cutting Edge Drug Discovery in 2015

Resources

  • ​Information on the grants we were awarded - SBIR.gov

  • Designed and launched TSRL, Inc. website - www.tsrlinc.com

MARKETING A CARDIOVASCULAR R&D SYSTEM - DIAGNOSTIC COMPANY

Introduction

Everist Health, a family owned health and wellness company, hired a team to develop and commercialize a combination machine learning algorithm/medical device, termed the AngioDefender® system. I worked with the Chief Operating Officer to create a multi-channel marketing strategy to increase awareness around a new, non-invasive approach for measuring and preventing cardiovascular disease as measured by flow mediated dilation. As a CE-marked device undergoing clinical trials at multiple international sites, we had to balance claim restrictions while engaging healthcare providers and patients.

Actions Taken

  1. Working with Chief Medical Officer and Regulatory Affairs, distilled clinical data into consumable marketing communications around "research use-only" applications of the AngioDefender® system

  2. Created consumer engagement tool called the Vascular Age Calculator to educate users and encourage clinical trial participation

  3. Initiated brand revitalization efforts, launching digital and print campaigns for both platform- and asset-specific content tailored to physicians and patients

  4. Created instructional videos and interactive websites, wrote blogs, and optimized SEO through a mixed media marketing approach

Results Achieved

  1. Successfully launched multi-channel marketing campaigns in North America and Asia-Pacific geographies, generating significant inbound interest from partners

  2. Click-through-rate of consumer engagement tool increased 212% quarter-over-quarter from launch

  3. Unique website visitors increased 67% and average time-on-page increased 42% from campaign launch

Marketing Diagnostic
Therapeutics Strategy
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