Biogen Names New CEO & PresidentBy
Biogen’s Board of Directors has appointed Christopher A. Viehbacher, former CEO of Sanofi and most recently co-founded Gurnet Point Capital, a healthcare investment fund, as President and CEO and a member of the Board of Directors, effective November 14, 2022. Viehbacher succeeds Michel Vounatsos, who announced in May 2022 that he would be stepping down as CEO.
Vounatsos, who has led Biogen since 2017 in May (May 2022) following lower-than-expected results and diminished prospects for its Alzheimer’s drug, Aduhelm (aducanumab), once touted as a potential blockbuster. The company also announced in May (May 2022) that it would implement a $500-million cost-reduction program, which involves substantially eliminating the commercial infrastructure for the drug. The $500 million is in addition to further cost-reductions announced by the company in last December (December 2021) to bring its total annualized cost-savings to $1 billion.
Viehbacher has 20 years of experience with GlaxoSmithKline and he served as global CEO of Sanofi for six years. More recently, Viehbacher and Ernesto Bertarelli co-founded Gurnet Point Capital, a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based healthcare investment fund. He has also chaired or been a member of the board of a number of entrepreneurial companies in biotechnology.