Rainer Westermann has a wealth of experience in Germany, Canada and the USA. He managed professional services firms and, as a corporate officer, was responsible for building, improving and protecting corporate reputation. In 2021, he was elected Chairman of the Life Sciences Acceleration Alliance e.V.
With Westermann Advisors, Rainer is focused on helping clients to communicate effectively in situations with a high reputation risk. Specialties are Reputation Management, Litigation PR, Crisis Communication, and Executive Communication. From 2017 to 2022, he served as President of the Crisis Protection Network (now Reputation Advisors International), Zurich. He continues to be a Member of the Board of this exclusive international association of experienced reputation professionals.
As Corporate Vice President of Infineon Technologies, a German DAX 30 corporation, he was responsibile for the corporate brand, marketing communications, government relations as well as external and internal communications. He was named CEO Germany for two of the leading international communication consultancies.
Rainer spent six years in North America, where he was a Member of the Management Board of LHS Group, an Atlanta based NASDAQ and Neuer Markt listed software company. He represented the company as corporate spokesperson towards the global investment community and the media. In Toronto, he built a successful corporate communications and investor relations practice for Fleishman-Hillard Canada. He joined the consultancy originally in Frankfurt, when he founded Fleishman-Hillard Germany, a joint venture formed from his own marketing communications agency. During his career, Rainer supported a number of clients in the health care sector and worked in-house for the medical products division of DuPont.
Rainer is an experienced public speaker and communications trainer. He is actively involved with the Technical University Munich, serving on the Advisory Board of the TUM Institute for LifeLong Learning as well as teaching as a lecturer at the TUM School of Management.
Cedric joined Sofinnova Partners in June 2018, bringing his 18 years of experience in life sciences investment banking. He is a partner on the Crossover team.
Cedric joined from Oddo BHF where he was managing director and head of healthcare in the corporate finance department. In 2017, Oddo BHF was the top ranked firm for European biotech equity capital market deals. Prior to this, he was director at Bryan Garnier & Co where he completed several sizable cross-border transactions, including Galapagos, DBV, Ablynx, and Celyad. In total, he has managed more than 2 billion euros in European healthcare transactions.
Sascha Berger, PhD, joined the TVM Capital Life Science team in Munich in 2016. He is active in deal flow generation, investment due diligence, deal and exit transactions, investor communication as well as corporate finance aspects of the fund.
Sascha has a strong financial background with almost ten years of professional transaction and strategy experience. He has a track-record of concluding 20 M&A transactions, five of those he led as responsible project manager in his previous role as Senior M&A Manager in a PE backed global corporation. He was a core team member in a successful EUR 2.5bn revenue cross-border merger and successfully coordinated global merger clearance procedures (USA, China, EU, Korea).
Prior to this recent role, Sascha successfully advised multiple renowned clients in corporate finance and strategy projects working as (senior) consultant for PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Boston Consulting Group. He was selected for the global leadership development program in his previous role and was named a global high-potential in PwC.
Sascha studied technology management in Munich, Singapore and Boston and holds a Master from Munich University of Technology with majors in entrepreneurial finance and chemistry, magna cum laude. In his master thesis he analyzed the specific challenges of biotech VC financing rounds. Later he completed his PhD studies in banking and finance while already working for PwC. He is a regular speaker on corporate finance topics for German universities and business schools.
Many of Stenström’s clients are regular and long-standing. Although we are a small consultancy, we count several multinational companies as our clients, and we often report to the highest level within those firms. Kajsa Stenström, who founded the firm has more than 20 years of experience providing strategic EU advice. Before launching her own firm, Kajsa created and managed the EU lobbying team of the international law firm DLA Piper and has also served as senior advisor to several international consultancies. Her experience means that Stenström is very close to the legal community in Brussels.
We are precise and conscientious in our work – but we can also see the bigger picture and understand the real impact of EU policy on our client’s daily business. We are discreet yet efficient; we know that “Brussels is all about compromise” and that a pushy attitude does not necessarily take you far. We also know to stay in the background during the dialogue between the client and the decision-maker. Finally, we pride ourselves on being able to think laterally; we enjoy working across sectors and finding synergies and unexpected collaborations.
Stenström also has an international network of partners, notably in Stockholm with Paues Åberg, as well as partners in Tel Aviv, London and Berlin. This way, we can provide our clients with the best possible representation in other capitals besides Brussels.
The firm has been named in the “Best in Brussels” list of top consultancies every year since the inception of the ranking. Additionally, Kajsa has been listed as a top consultant in every edition. We are also featured in the MACE listing of Brussels consultancies.
Juliette Audet is a core member of the Forbion investment team, investing and building companies across therapeutic areas and modalities. She was part of the team that built NewAmsterdam Pharma, outlicensed the asset, set up operations and recruited the management team. She currently serves as a board member for NewAmsterdam Pharma, Mestag Therapeutics and is an observer on a stealth inflammation company.
Prior to joining Forbion, Juliette was a Principal at Novartis Venture Fund (NVF) based in Cambridge (USA) where she sat on the boards of TScan Therapeutics and Annexon Biosciences as an observer. Juliette was also leading the management NVF’s public equities.
Michael Baran, MBA, PHD is Executive Director, WRDM and Partner at Pfizer Ventures. Mike is responsible for identifying, evaluating, making and managing equity investments aligned with the future directions of Pfizer. He currently has responsibility for Pfizer’s investments in Anjarium Biosciences, Autobahn Therapeutics, Interius BioTherapeutics, ImCheck Therapeutics, ImmunOs Therapeutics, Magnolia Neurosciences, Mediar Therapeutics, Parthenon Therapeutics, and TRex Bio. His prior investment responsibilities include Accelerator Life Science Partners, Bluelight Therapeutics, AnTolRx, and Netvation DL. Mike is an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Stony Brook University and plays an active role in the NY/NJ early life science ecosystem as a Mentor in Residence for Rutgers University and a Venture Advisor for eLabNYC.s.
Jan-Philipp was part of the founding leadership team of EIT Health and became the organization’s CEO in 2018. EIT Health is a pan-European health innovation network with more than 130 partner organisations in Europe. Co-funded by the European Commission and working at the intersection of business, education and research, EIT Health empowers a network of innovators and investors to put innovative products and services into the hands of those that need them the most.
Prior to leading EIT Health, Jan-Philipp has worked at international management consulting firms and in the non-profit sector as Executive Director of the European Youth Parliament, an educational project of the Schwarzkopf Foundation.
Today, Jan-Philipp is a Partner at Vintura and leads the firm’s German practice. Vintura provides strategy consulting to clients in the life sciences industry. Jan-Philipp’s core expertise lies in the development and execution of strategies that support the industry with the implementation of transformative projects towards higher quality, more effective, efficient and patient-centric care.
Johannes Fruehauf is a biotech entrepreneur and investor with a track record of building and growing successful companies. Johannes is a physician-scientist experienced in the development of complex biologics programs from bench into the clinic, including the first oral RNAi drug to enter the clinic.
He is also the co-founder and General Partner at MissionBioCapital.
Shu Joshi is a seasoned fund manager with 15+ years of work experience in PE/VC, corporate strategy, mergers, acquisitions and entrepreneurial set-ups spanning across multiple geographic locations including UK, Europe, and the USA covering medical device, biopharmaceutical, and healthcare sector. His alma mater includes University College London (UK) and Stanford Graduate School of Business (USA).
Claire Machin joined the ABPI in February 2018, initially as part of the Commercial Policy team on the 2019 Voluntary Scheme negotiations, and has since transitioned to focus on building the ABPI’s International Policy function.
Her team is responsible for the ABPI’s international work on intellectual property, market access, regulation, trade (EU-UK & rest of world) and global health. Claire is also responsible for strengthening the ABPI’s working relationships with its international sister associations and UK industry engagement with multi-lateral organisations such as the WHO, WTO and WIPO as well as multilateral forums including the G7 and G20.
Marianne is a Partner at Apollo Health Ventures and responsible for Apollo’s investment and company building activities. Prior to joining the Apollo team, Marianne was a Principal with Wellington Partners, a pan-European Venture Capital firm investing in early- and growth-stage Life Science companies. In this role she led Wellington’s investments in Confo Therapeutics and Imcheck Therapeutics, and supported portfolio companies across different stages of development. Before Wellington Marianne was an Investment Manager in the Life Science Team of HTGF where she managed a portfolio of seven portfolio companies. Earlier in her career Marianne worked as a management consultant and supported pharmaceutical and medtech companies relative to strategy, portfolio and business unit development. Marianne obtained a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree with distinction in Biotechnology from the RWTH Aachen University and The Scripps Research Institute, and conducted her PhD research focusing on the molecular imaging of cardiac regenerative medicines.
Dr. Karl Nägler is a Managing Partner at Wellington Partners. He holds a PhD in neurobiology, and is a former Partner at Gimv, Ventech and Investment Manager at Atlas. Dr. Nagler has been instrumental in creating and growing numerous European biopharma and medtech companies, many of them to successful exits including Breath, Prosonix, and Covagen.
Christian Pierret is currently a board member of HealthTech for Care and international business lawyer with the law firm August&Debouzy. He is also an experienced entrepreneur behind the creation of venture capital company SEDAPAR, and several other innovate start-ups in the field of health tech. Mr. Pierret’s dual career in politics and the private sector are marked by numerous political and entrepreneurial roles and achievements including: Vice Chairman of ACCOR Group, Former Minister of Industry and SMEs, former Chairman of the supervisory board of the Caisse des Dépots, Former Speaker for the Budget at the Assemblée nationale.
Dr. Satish Prasad Rath is a physician- scientist, digital health professor and founder. His research areas involve sustainable health system design, which is based on meaningful patient engagement, AI that automates mundane processes and finds out the needle out of the haystack, IoT that makes the entire connected health system data driven and proactive and finally a health system that’s driven by core value of empathy and trust. He is an advisor to multiple startups as well on board of incubators and accelerators.
He received his Biology degree at the “La Sapienza” University of Rome, his PhD in Oncology and his specialization in microbiology at the University of Perugia, Italy, his post-graduate qualification in preclinical and clinical development of drugs from University “La Bicocca” Milano and his Master in Business Administration (MBA) at the HULT International Business School, London. He holds an honorary research position at the University College London (UCL) in the Institute of Liver and Digestive Health (ILDH) and invited professor to the Milano Bicocca University.
He was head of biology of Intercept Pharmaceuticals Inc.; Consultant at Index Ventures (MediXci), a venture capital firm; CEO of iDNA Ltd, a drug discovery service company; Vice President of Yaqrit Ltd, a spin off company of the University College London; Chief of Innovation Division and member of board of directors of Zcube, Zambon group.
Dr. Rizzo is an entrepreneur and an investor himself of the London Business Angels (LBA) association; he holds a board member position in the Italian Angels for Biotech.
Thibaut Roulon is a Senior Investment Director at Bpifrance with more than 15 years of experience in Venture Capital. He is also a member of the Bpifrance investment committee for small cap growth and buyout investments, an experienced board member, and holds previous experience in pharma, academic research and U.S biotech.
Diana Saraceni is Co-Founder & Managing Partner at Panakès a venture capital firm dedicated to early-stage investments in Life Sciences primarily in Europe and Israel. With over 20 years of venture capital experience, she has also co-founded and managed 360 Capital Partners, another leading pan-European venture capital firm. She has led investments in a significant number of companies all over Europe, not only in the life sciences sector, and generated several exits as IPO and M&A transactions. Diana is also part of several committees in Europe and in the US for public/private grants and awards allocation to start-ups. She also follows several portfolios in brain health-tech.
Claire Skentelbery holds a PhD in biochemistry and has worked in the development of scientific networks and associations for over 15 years. She started her career as part of the Cambridge biotech cluster in the UK within the cluster business network and was a founder of the Council of European BioRegions, a network of biotech clusters across Europe. She brought herself and CEBR to Brussels in 2009 where she also took on the role of SG for the European Biotechnology Network, working across sectors, organisations and countries as part of the EBN mission to facilitate partnerships. In January 2017, Dr. Skentelbery took up her role as DG of the Nanotechnology Industries Association which she successfully led.
Klaus Stöckemann is co-founder and Managing Partner of Peppermint VenturePartners GmbH (PVP), a private Venture Capital firm based in Berlin, Germany. Grown out of Peppermint Holding, a mid-sized industry group, Peppermint VenturePartners is dedicated to supporting outstanding entrepreneurs and innovative scientists in transforming healthcare.
Walter is a seasoned healthcare investor with previous experience in strategy consulting and basic research. After joining the Boston Consulting Group as a member of the Healthcare Practice Team Walter advised pharmaceutical companies and PE firms in the context of commercial projects as well as during buy and sell side M&A transactions. In 2009, Walter joined the London office of one of the largest specialist healthcare VC firms. Being responsible for deal sourcing, due diligence and exit management Walter gained significant experience by successfully investing into and exiting portfolio companies.
Walter received a master’s degree and a PhD in biochemistry from the University of Vienna. After his graduation, he worked for over five years as a research fellow at Harvard University. He has published 15 peer reviewed papers in top scientific journals including Cell and EMBO.
Jean-Jaques Yarmoff is an experienced business developer in the pharmaceutical industry. In addition to being a French External Trade advisor, he also has experience in innovation support and financing.
Cornelia Yzer advises domestic and foreign companies on mergers & acquisitions as well as on regulatory issues, contributing her many years of experience both in industry and in government offices to her consulting activities. Cornelia Yzer’s particular industry focus is on the life science and digital economy sectors. At Luther Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft, Cornelia Yzer is coordinator of the Health Care & Life Science division and the Digital Health working group. In addition, Cornelia Yzer advises clients on all questions of research funding.
John is the Executive Director of Incubate Coalition, a 501(c)(4) organization of venture capital firms representing the patient, corporate, and investment communities. The primary aim is to educate policymakers on the role of venture capital in bringing promising treatments to patients in need. John is a government relations and public affairs professional with experience leading multi-year advocacy and awareness campaigns. As a partner at Prism Group, John leads Democratic lobbying and engagement on the federal level, specializing in identifying champions for pro-growth and innovation agendas. His relationships on Capitol Hill are build on nearly a decade of experience.
John Stanford is also the co-founder of Small Business Roundtable. More recently, he is on the board of directors of Pass USMCA, the organization dedicated to ratification of the U.S. – Mexico – Canada Agreement. As a part of the trilateral negotiating round in Montreal, Canada and in testimony before the International Trade Commission, John encouraged the inclusion of entrepreneurship priorities in all trade deals and the need for strong intellectual property protections. His previous efforts included work for a Democratic House Member on Capitol Hill, the British Houses of Parliament, a Presidential and Senate campaign, and with non-profit organizations. A Denver, CO native, he is a graduate of the College of William & Mary and has a B.A. in Government as well as an M. Ed. in Secondary Education. Prior to returning to Washington, John committed to Teach For America in Phoenix, Arizona. He currently sits on the DC board of his alma mater.
John provides regular commentary on key issues around innovation and the economy, including in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, CNBC.
Yann looks back at more than 25 years of experience within technology, heathtech, B2B, media relations and corporate communications. He has worked for several French and international public relations agencies. His background is successfully advocating clients at every level of the French authorities. His career includes consulting notable life science companies and their investors. Yann is the Co-founder of Life Sciences Acceleration Alliance and based in France.