Replimune Appoints Genentech Global Oncology Franchise Head Sushil Patel, Ph.D. as Chief Commercial Officer
WOBURN, Mass., April 21, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Replimune Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: REPL), a biotechnology company developing oncolytic immuno-gene therapies derived from its Immulytic™ platform, today announced the strengthening of its executive team with the appointment of Sushil Patel, Ph.D. as Replimune’s Chief Commercial Officer effective May 3, 2021. Sushil joins from Genentech, a member of the Roche Group, where he was global oncology franchise head for lung cancer, skin cancer and rare / agnostic tumor types and was previously lifecycle leader and “CEO for the molecule” in lung cancer for the multi-billion-dollar checkpoint blockade drug Tecentriq.
“We are thrilled to welcome Sushil to our leadership team,” said Philip Astley-Sparke, Chief Executive Officer of Replimune. “Sushil brings a wealth of experience in immuno-oncology and an incredible track record of success in defining and implementing launch strategies. He is well suited to both spearhead the development of Replimune’s commercial capabilities and help guide our indication expansion and prioritization strategy as we seek to expedite the development of our pipeline to benefit as many patients as possible.”
Sushil Patel commented, “Replimune’s broad pipeline of oncolytic immuno-gene therapies could become the next cornerstone of immuno-oncology treatment regimens. With RP1 in two registration-directed trials in CSCC and melanoma, it is now time to build an innovative and comprehensive commercial strategy and assemble a world-class team to advance these first-in-class therapies to patients. I am excited to be joining such a dynamic organization and look forward to doing my part to deliver on the full promise of the Company’s leading immuno-oncolytic platform.”
As Chief Commercial Officer, Sushil will lead Replimune’s commercial team including launch readiness initiatives and play a key role in the development and execution of the Company’s “go to market” strategy. Sushil brings more than 20 years of oncology experience with pertinent skills in strategy, US and international oncology marketing and sales, and clinical development. He most recently served as Franchise Head in Global Product Strategy for Genentech. In this role, he was responsible for directing the company’s lung and skin cancer franchise with responsibility for multiple blockbuster drugs, generating in excess of $3.5 billion in annual global sales.
Prior to his career in biotechnology, he worked as a strategic management consultant and at IMS Health in their Pharma Strategy Group. Sushil received a Doctor of Philosophy in Molecular Biology and a Master of Sciences in Biotechnology, both from the Imperial College of Science Technology and Medicine, University of London.
In connection with his appointment, Replimune will grant Sushil a stock option to purchase 125,000 shares of its common stock with an exercise price equal to the closing price of Replimune’s common stock on the grant date. The stock option will have a 10-year term and will vest over four years, with 25% of the underlying shares vesting on the one-year anniversary of the grant date and the remainder vesting monthly for three years thereafter. Replimune will also grant Sushil restricted stock units, representing 88,333 shares of its common stock. The restricted stock units will vest in approximately four equal annual installments beginning on May 15, 2022.
The stock option and restricted stock units (the “equity awards”) will be granted subject to and effective upon the commencement of Sushil’s employment on May 3, 2021. The equity awards will be granted outside of Replimune’s 2018 Equity Incentive Plan, but will have terms and conditions consistent with those set forth under the plan. The equity awards were approved by the compensation committee of Replimune’s board of directors in reliance on the employment inducement exception under Nasdaq Listing Rule 5635(c)(4).
Replimune Group, Inc., headquartered in Woburn, MA, was founded in 2015 to develop the next generation of oncolytic immune-gene therapies for the treatment of cancer. Replimune is developing novel, proprietary therapeutics intended to improve the direct cancer-killing effects of selective virus replication and the potency of the immune response to the tumor antigens released. Replimune’s Immulytic™ platform is designed to maximize systemic immune activation, in particular to tumor neoantigens, through robust viral-mediated immunogenic tumor cell killing and the delivery of optimal combinations of immune-activating proteins to the tumor and draining lymph nodes. The approach is expected to be highly synergistic with immune checkpoint blockade and other approaches to cancer treatment across a broad range of cancers. Replimune intends to progress these therapies rapidly through clinical development in combination with other immuno-oncology products with complementary mechanisms of action as well as in standalone indications. For more information, please visit www.replimune.com.
Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains forward looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, including statements regarding the advancement of our clinical trials, our plans to initiate new clinical trials, our goals to develop and commercialize our product candidates, and other statements identified by words such as “could,” “expects,” “intends,” “may,” “plans,” “potential,” “should,” “will,” “would,” or similar expressions and the negatives of those terms. Forward-looking statements are not promises or guarantees of future performance, and are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control, and which could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in such forward-looking statements. These factors include risks related to our limited operating history, our ability to generate positive clinical trial results for our product candidates, the costs and timing of operating our in-house manufacturing facility, the timing and scope of regulatory approvals, changes in laws and regulations to which we are subject, competitive pressures, our ability to identify additional product candidates, political and global macro factors including the impact of the coronavirus as a global pandemic and related public health issues, and other risks as may be detailed from time to time in our Annual Reports on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and other reports we file with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Our actual results could differ materially from the results described in or implied by such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date hereof, and, except as required by law, we undertake no obligation to update or revise these forward-looking statements.
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