Biogen Seeks Successor to CEO
Biogen’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) George Scangos will be leaving the company in the coming months after a successor has been identified. The company made the announcement as part of its second-quarter earnings release.
Biogen said it will begin a search for his successor immediately and will consider both internal and external candidates. Dr. Scangos has been at Biogen for six years. Biogen expects the transition to occur over a period of a few months, and in the interim, Dr. Scangos will continue to serve as CEO.
Biogen reported second-quarter revenues of $2.89 billion, a 12% gain year over year and a 6% gain over the first quarter of 2016.
The change in leadership comes as the company plans a spin-off. In May 2016, Biogen announced its intent to spin off its hemophilia business as an independent, publicly traded company. The new company, to be named at a later date, will focus on the discovery and development of therapies for the treatment of hemophilia, with existing marketed products to include Eloctate and Alprolix, indicated for the treatment of hemophilia A and B, respectively. The new company is expected to continue to develop and commercialize Eloctate and Alprolix under Biogen’s existing collaboration agreement with Swedish Orphan Biovitrum AB. Eloctate and Alprolix generated combined revenues of $640 million during the twelve-month period ended March 31, 2016.
The new company plans to bring longer acting therapies using the XTEN technology into clinical development in the first half of 2017 and to accelerate the development of bispecific antibodies and hemophilia-related gene therapy programs. The new company also plans to conduct additional studies to confirm early data that suggest Eloctate’s potential to rapidly induce immune tolerance in hemophilia patients who develop inhibitors.
As prevoiusly announced, John G. Cox, Biogen's current executive vice president, pharmaceutical operations & technology, will serve as the chief executive officer of the new company. Mr. Cox joined Biogen in 2003 and has held several senior executive positions, including senior vice president of technical operations, senior vice president of global manufacturing, and vice president of manufacturing and general manager of Biogen's operations in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. In his time at Biogen, Mr. Cox has been closely involved with the hemophilia business, spending five years in the manufacturing of Eloctate and Alprolix, and two years in launching and commercializing these products. Most recently, Mr. Cox also served as the interim head of Biogen's commercial organization.