The New Kids on the Biotech Block: Trends in Early Stage Financing

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Tuesday, October 9th, 9:00am-9:55am, Twin Peaks N/S

Although venture capital financing continues to decrease in the life sciences, (43% drop in 1Q2012), the dearth in capital has spawned a new team of funders that are stepping up to the plate to fill the gap. What unique experiences can these new players bring and how will they impact and improve the drug development process? What other mechanisms are being used in early stage financing?

Moderator:

  • Jeron Eaves, Senior Practice Executive, Campbell Alliance

Panelists:

  • Lindy Fishburne, Executive Director, Breakout Labs, Thiel Foundation
  • Mark Goldsmith, MD, PhD, Venture Partner, Third Rock Ventures
  • Walter C. Ogier, President & CEO, Acetylon Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
  • Robert Sarisky, PhD, Chief Business Officer, Forma Therapeutics, Inc.

Who's Who

Jeron Eaves
Senior Practice Executive, Campbell Alliance

Jeron Eaves brings to Campbell Alliance nearly 15 years of experience working in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. He leverages his scientific education, business aptitude, and real-world experience to provide strategic advice across corporate development and commercial objectives for executive leadership of pharmaceutical and biotechnology clients.

Before joining Campbell Alliance, Mr. Eaves held consulting positions in pharma and biotech, and Corporate Finance positions for a Fortune 50 Company. Before pursuing his MBA, Mr. Eaves worked as a synthetic organic chemist with a focus on the design and development of novel therapeutics for two biotechnology companies.

Mr. Eaves earned an MBA from the University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School and a BS in Chemistry from the University of North Carolina.  

Lindy Fishburne
Executive Director, Breakout Labs, Thiel Foundation

Lindy Fishburne is the Executive Director of Breakout Labs, the newest project of The Thiel Foundation. After years in the trenches with start-ups, non-profit management, and consulting for global technology companies she's never been more inspired than by the scientific innovation happening right now. Follow on Twitter @breakoutlabs 

Mark Goldsmith, MD, PhD
Venture Partner, Third Rock Ventures

Mark Goldsmith has committed his entire career to medical science. Dr. Goldsmith joined Third Rock Ventures in 2012 as a venture partner, where he contributes to the ideation, development and leadership of innovative companies. Previously, Dr. Goldsmith was president and chief executive officer of Constellation Pharmaceuticals, where he led the company to a preeminent position in the field of epigenetics and to development of a class-leading strategic relationship with Genentech/Roche. He continues active involvement with Constellation, a Third Rock Ventures portfolio company, in the role of executive chairman.

Before Constellation, Dr. Goldsmith held other senior executive positions in the biotechnology industry and academia. Prior to his appointment at Constellation in 2009, he was senior executive-in-residence at Prospect Venture Partners, a leading life science investment firm based on the west coast, after serving as chairman and CEO of Cogentus Pharmaceuticals. Previously he was senior vice president, responsible for the health care division of Genencor International, an independent and publically listed company prior to its acquisition by Danisco. Before entering the private sector, Dr. Goldsmith led a productive biomedical research laboratory at the Gladstone Institute of Virology and Immunology, and he has co-authored 85 peer-reviewed scientific publications and is co-inventor on multiple patents. He practiced medicine on the faculty of the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF) School of Medicine and at San Francisco General Hospital, and served as a consultant to and collaborator of leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.

Dr. Goldsmith received his BA degree from Princeton University, earned his MD and PhD in microbiology and immunology from UCSF, and conducted postgraduate medical training at Harvard Medical School and UCSF.

Robert Sarisky, PhD
Chief Business Officer, Forma Therapeutics, Inc.

Robert Sarisky is Chief Business Officer at Forma Therapeutics, joining the company in August 2012 from Janssen Pharmaceuticals where he most recently served as Vice President of Oncology Business Development and Licensing.  Prior to that role, Rob has held positions of Vice President of External Research and Early Development within Johnson & Johnson, Sr. Director of Immunology Research at Centocor, and Director of Virology at GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals.

Rob received his BS degree in Biology from the University of Scranton, a PhD in Genetics from the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, completed his postdoctoral training at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and holds an MBA in Marketing from Lehigh University.  He has authored more than 120 publications and patents and served on the Editorial Board for two scientific journals. He has been active in the academic community by serving on the University of Pennsylvania Executive Advisory Committee for the HHMI Graduate Training in Medical Sciences, the University of Miami Innovation Corporate Advisory Council, the University of North Carolina Innovation Transfer and Development Initiative, adjunct Professor for Drexel University School of Medicine and an Advisory Board member for Indiana University's Biotechnology Program.