September 20, 2019 – Although boards of directors are considered the backbones of organizations, director recruiting has grown markedly more challenging, say recruiters who conduct searches in that area. As a result, companies continue to turn to executive search firms to help find new board members.
Recently, life sciences-focused executive search firm Coulter Partners placed Mads Laustsen as a non-executive board member for Helsinki-based drug particle engineering and nanotechnology company Nanoform. Client partner Eskil Westh led the assignment.
Bridging the Diversity Gap on Boards
A stubborn paradox exists within boardrooms across America. Companies are appointing more women to board seats than ever before, yet the overall share of women directors is barely budging. While business leaders have gotten the clear message that diversity matters in the workplace, it is equally clear that current methods of sourcing and selecting candidates is falling short.
Peggy Alford, a senior executive with PayPal who was just elected as the first African American woman to join the nine-member board of social media giant Facebook, joins Hunt Scanlon Media in New York on Nov. 6 to examine the disconnect between the business community’s intent to achieve greater equality on their boards and the realization of attaining that goal. She will explore why every company needs to cultivate a culture of inclusiveness and she will outline steps for companies and recruiters to take to boost diversification at a faster rate.
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“It gives me great pleasure to welcome Mads Laustsen to the Nanoform board,” said Edward Hæggström, CEO of Nanoform. “Mads is an exceptional entrepreneur with vast experience in the provision of GMP facilities and infrastructures. His outstanding experience will be incredibly valuable as we expand our manufacturing capacity and I thank the highly professional team at Coulter Partners for helping us once more to achieve such a quality appointment.”
Mr. Laustsen has over 30 years of experience in pharmaceutical development and manufacturing. As co-founder and CEO of the international biologics contract manufacturing organization CMC Biologics, he was responsible for the creation, development and operation of facilities in Europe and the U.S. He has extensive experience in process development and patenting, and holds senior positions within a number of Danish biotechnology companies, including Synklino, Bactolife and Symphogen.
Related: U.S. Boards Seen as Slowly Evolving
The appointment of Mr. Laustsen to the board coincides with the rapid construction progress of Nanoform’s GMP manufacturing plant. “Increased capacity, combined with Mr. Laustsen’s deep knowledge of manufacturing development, will enable Nanoform to achieve its aim of doubling the number of drug compounds that successfully reach the market and adding value to Pharma clients existing pipelines,” said the company.
“I am excited to be joining the Nanoform board as the company prepares to further international commercialization of its best-in-class nanonization technology,” Mr. Laustsen said. “I look forward to working with the ambitious and skilled Nanoform team as they enable more patients around the world to benefit from enhanced drug therapies.”
The 7 Hallmarks of Effective Boards
In this brand new episode of ‘Talent Talks,’ we delve into the seven hallmarks of building effective boards with our host Andrew Mitchell, alongside Sabine Dembkowski, managing partner at Better Boards.
According to Ms. Dembkowski, there is indeed a question about the relevance of boards today. “There is a disconnect from what we are seeing between boards and the knowhow that is necessary to be successful in the 21st century,” said Ms. Dembkowski. Listen now!
Nanoform is an innovative nanoparticle medicine enabling company that works together with pharma and biotech partners globally to reduce clinical attrition and enhance their molecules formulation performance through its best-in-class nanonization services.
Last year, Nanoform turned to Coulter Partners to find chief commercial officer Christian Jones. Mr. Westh also led that search. Mr. Jones has international business development and commercial experience within both pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries, specifically in the particle engineering and drug delivery fields, said Coulter Partners. He joined Nanoform from Johnson Matthey, where he was commercial director for European API development and manufacturing.
Life Sciences Specialists
Coulter Partners is a senior-level executive search boutique focused exclusively on identifying global life sciences leaders and board directors. The firm serves clients in the pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, medical devices, diagnostics, CRO and services sectors. Coulter operates overseas offices in the U.K., Germany, Switzerland and Denmark. In the U.S., the firm has offices in Cambridge, MA; Princeton, NJ; Pittsburgh, PA; Los Angeles; and Short Hills, NJ.
Mr. Westh heads the Nordics team from the Danish office, which opened in 2015. He concentrates on senior-level searches across Europe, and with a focus ranging from venture capital backed start-ups to larger, established pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical devices affiliates. Mr. Westh has over 18 years search experience across a broad spectrum of life sciences businesses in the Nordics and the rest of Europe, with a strong track record of scientific and commercial appointments.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media