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Dealmaking in a time of coronavirus

Contrary to what many people may have thought, the outbreak that has stymied so many organizations has pushed biopharma into overdrive on dealmaking. On top of the new alliances being formed for Covid-19, companies are also coming together on a long list of new projects related to core research areas.

What stage — discovery, early, late — is getting the most attention and how do you work terms on this new blizzard of deals being formed overnight?

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Chris Dokomajilar

Chris Dokomajilar

Founder & CEO, DEALFORMA

Chris leads strategy, operations, data analytics, and content development. Prior to founding DealForma, Chris held research, management consulting, and industry analytics roles within biopharma at UCSF, Recap, Deloitte, Thomson Reuters, and BioCentury. He enjoys the opportunity to contribute to industry thought-leadership and is frequently invited to speak to industry groups about biopharma business development and licensing. Chris holds degrees from the University of California Berkeley.

Marianne De Backer

Marianne De Backer

Executive Vice President/Head of Strategy, Business Development & Licensing, Bayer

Dr. Marianne De Backer has been a strategist, scientist, business leader, deal maker and corporate investor in the healthcare industry for more than two decades. At Bayer, she leads the global strategy and innovation agenda for Pharma. Prior to joining Bayer, Dr. De Backer had an impressive career path at Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), her last role as global head of M&A operations and Divestitures for the Pharmaceuticals Group.

She is a member of the Board of Directors of Gladstone Foundation, Ecohealth Alliance and Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals (ARWR). Born in Belgium, she holds an MBA from Erasmus University Rotterdam, a PhD in Biotechnology and Master in Engineering from the University of Ghent, and a MSc in Molecular Biology from the University of Brussels.

Abbas Kazimi

Abbas Kazimi

Vice President Business Development, Nimbus Therapeutics

As Vice President of Business Development, Abbas Kazimi is responsible for corporate development, partnerships and collaborations. Abbas joined Nimbus in 2014 as Director of Business Development. In that role he drove several of the company’s key transactions, including the licensing agreement with Genentech in 2015, the sale of Nimbus’ clinical NASH program to Gilead in 2016, and the strategic immunology alliance with Celgene announced in 2017. Prior to joining Nimbus, Abbas spent a decade in planning and executing strategic transactions for life sciences clients with industry partners and financial investors across the globe, most recently at Extera Partners, LLC. He earned his M.A. from Harvard University and his B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin.

Melita Sun Jung

Melita Sun Jung

Senior Vice President and Head of Business Development, Sangamo Therapeutics

Melita brings over 20 years of life sciences corporate development, commercial, and investment expertise. She has led deals with combined value over $5 billion, and upfront consideration exceeding $500 million. Recent partnerships include Sangamo’s Biogen CNS collaboration, Kite/Gilead gene editing oncology partnership, and Pfizer ALS collaboration; and the acquisition of TxCell, a leader in the emerging field of regulatory T cell therapies.

Previously, Melita led teams at Adamas, focused on neurological disorders; and Ascendancy Healthcare, with a mission to bring innovative treatments to China. Before that, Melita held roles in business development and commercialization, leading marketing for Ipsen’s specialty endocrinology brand, and directing market research activities for multiple brands including the launch of the company's flagship neurology product.

Melita started her career in venture capital and fund management, at Bay City Capital and Lombard Odier Darier Hentsch.

Melita received her BA in Biology from the University of California at Berkeley.

Peter Meath

Peter Meath

Industry Head, J.P. Morgan Life Sciences

Peter Meath serves as the Managing Director and Life Sciences Industry Head for Middle Market Banking & Specialized Industries. Prior to joining J.P. Morgan, he was a co-founder of Square 1 Bank, the second-largest de novo bank startup in US history, and only the second bank in the US to solely focus on emerging growth technology, healthcare and life sciences companies. Peter led the bank’s technology and life sciences practice in the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic, serving venture capital- and private equity-backed clients and investors from Florida to Pennsylvania. Previously, Peter served a one-year venture capital fellowship with Intersouth Partners, an $800 million venture capital firm in Durham, NC. Peter also spent time at Silicon Valley Bank, first in the bank’s first southeast regional office in Atlanta and then as one of the founding team members of its Research Triangle Park office in North Carolina in 2001. Peter graduated from the McIntire School of Commerce at the University of Virginia and holds a Master of Business Administration from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. Peter is based in Raleigh, N.C.

Prakash Raman

Prakash Raman

Senior Partner & Chief Business Development Officer, FLAGSHIP PIONEERING
John Carroll
moderator

John Carroll

Founder & Editor, Endpoints News

John D. Carroll is a biotech analyst and writer with decades of prize-winning experience in journalism. A co-founder of Endpoints News, he has covered biopharma for the past 17 years. Aside from his daily industry coverage for FierceBiotech, where he was named editor in 2003, leaving in 2016, Carroll has been a regular speaker at biotech events around the globe. He’s been quoted by The New York Times, The New Yorker, Financial Times, The Times of London and more. He’s also keynoted at biotech gatherings around the world and addressed student audiences at MIT and Harvard.