SymBiosis Hires Jahan Ali, PhD as Vice President of Business

Will Lead SymBiosis’ Engagement with Industry and Clinical Partners

Firm Names Five Operating Advisors to Help Portfolio Companies Advance Missions

Launches New Website

BENTONVILLE, Ark.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Symbiosis, an investment firm focused on advancing biotherapeutics innovations, announced today that Dr. Jahan Ali, PhD has joined the firm as Vice President of Business Development. Dr. Ali will focus on investment sourcing, due diligence, execution and advisory, particularly in connection with SymBiosis’ engagement with industry and clinical partners. She joins SymBiosis from Weill Cornell Medicine where she provided entrepreneurial education and helped to launch companies as the Director of Bioventure ELab.

Chidozie Ugwumba, Managing Partner at SymBiosis, said, “We are thrilled to welcome Jahan, who brings years of experience in commercializing early-stage biotechnologies, launching life science startups, and developing strategic programs to forge regional biotherapeutics ecosystems. Her educational and business development expertise will be invaluable as we work to increase SymBiosis’ capabilities to help our portfolio companies advance their missions.”

SymBiosis also announced the addition of five Operating Advisors whose skillsets are directly relevant to the firm’s broad focus on biotherapeutics as it continues to expand its portfolio. The Operating Advisors will collaborate with SymBiosis and portfolio company management teams across the full investment life cycle in a range of critical areas—including drug development, clinical investigation, biomanufacturing, regulatory, market access, and commercialization. The Operating Advisors are:

  • Dr. Andrew Badley, MD, Professor of Infectious Diseases, and Professor and Chair of Molecular Medicine at Mayo Clinic
  • Dr. Gene Kym, PhD, Senior Vice President of Corporate Development and Co-founder of ConjugateBio
  • Dr. Jennifer Miller, PhD, advisor and executive for startup companies in life science and technology
  • Tony Khoury, Executive Vice President, Project Farma
  • Wesley Winn, CEO, LifeCycle Advisors

Mr. Ugwumba added, “We are excited to have assembled a group of extraordinary industry executives to serve as Operating Advisors. Having high-caliber professionals who are leaders in their respective fields join SymBiosis is a testament to the business we are building and, even more important, the impact our portfolio companies will have on the future of biotherapeutics. We look forward to working closely with our Operating Advisors to help our portfolio companies achieve their missions of developing medicines with the potential to cure diseases and improve lives across the globe.”

SymBiosis also has launched a new website at www.symbiosis.vc, which provides expanded information on the firm and its investment activities.

Biographies

Dr. Jahan Ali, PhD

Prior to joining SymBiosis, Dr. Ali spent the past 20+ years commercializing early-stage biotechnology products. Most recently, she led the Bioventure entrepreneurship lab at Weill Cornell, where she worked closely with scientist entrepreneurs. Dr. Ali has held roles leading biotech investments at the Partnership Fund; in technology commercialization at the Hospital for Special Surgery, and Mount Sinai School of Medicine; and as a Business Development director at Mojave Therapeutics, a biotechnology company developing therapeutic vaccines. She has a PhD from New York University School of Medicine and did a post-doc at Rockefeller University.

Dr. Andrew Badley, MD

Dr. Badley supports the team in scientific due diligence on potential investments and provides ongoing advice to our portfolio companies from a clinician’s perspective—both informally, and as a board observer or member. He is a Professor of Infectious Diseases, and Professor and Chair of Molecular Medicine at Mayo Clinic, where he is actively involved in discovery and translational research focused on therapeutic immune response. Dr. Badley has led several INDs and clinical trials on novel therapeutic interventions. He graduated from Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia and did residency and fellowship training at Mayo Clinic.

Dr. Gene Kym, PhD

Dr. Kym supports the team in investment sourcing—both in the US and internationally—and scientific due diligence. He is SVP of Corporate Development and Co-founder of ConjugateBio, a therapeutics company focused on innovative antibody-drug conjugates. Prior to ConjugateBio, Dr. Kym was Director of Open Innovation at Samsung Biologics in Korea. He was also a management consultant with ZS Associates in California focused on biopharma strategy and operations. He has personally consulted for numerous early-stage biotech groups, including antibody startup companies in Asia and Arix Bioscience VC in New York and London. Dr. Kym began his biotech career as a researcher at Ion Torrent developing bench-top DNA sequencers. He holds a PhD in Biology from Caltech, a MS in Biology from Seoul National, a BA in Biochemistry from UC Berkeley, and also studied Mandarin at Beijing Language and Culture University. He splits his time between Asia and the US.

Dr. Jennifer Miller, PhD

Dr. Miller supports the team in investment sourcing and technical due diligence, with a particular focus on AI/ML and computational drug discovery. She also serves as an advisor and board member for portfolio companies. In addition to SymBiosis, Dr. Miller serves as an advisor and fractional executive for startup companies working at the intersection of life science and technology. Previously, she led Strategy and Corporate Development for Depomed and served in the Corporate Development and Technology group at Amphora Discovery. Dr. Miller began her career as a scientist and held R&D leadership roles of increasing responsibility at Signature Bioscience, DuPont Pharma Research Labs and CombiChem. She has served as a “Big Data in Health” NIH SBIR grant program reviewer and as a member of MyoKardia’s Digital Health Steering Committee. She earned her Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from UCSF and her B.S. in Computer Science from San Diego State University.

Tony Khoury

Mr. Khoury supports the team in investment sourcing, technical due diligence—with a particular focus on biomanufacturing—and special projects related to building a biotechnology ecosystem. As Executive Vice President at Project Farma, he has spearheaded the firm’s growth in the biotech space with a focus on next generation medicines including gene therapy, cell therapy, and gene editing. Mr. Khoury has extensive experience with small and large molecules including biologics, biosimilars, RNA, and cell and gene therapies across life science sector including startups, academic centers, financial institutions and CMOs/CROs. He has led global programs with greater than $1 billion in value across business and technical operations strategy, program management, turnkey facility builds, automation, validation, quality, engineering and serialization track and trace. Mr. Khoury has played an integral role in pioneering the industrialization of advanced therapies including two FDA-approved cell and gene therapies. He has led the creation of Project Farma’s Advanced Therapy Manufacturing Playbook which has helped develop the largest cell and gene therapy manufacturing footprints in the world. He earned his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from University of Illinois at Chicago.

Wesley Winn

Mr. Winn supports the team by advising portfolio companies on business development and commercialization strategy. He is currently the CEO of LifeCycle Advisors, a firm supporting clients in commercial launch planning and deal diligence. Mr. Winn was formerly SVP of Business Operations at Global Blood Therapeutics supporting the launch of a novel Sickle Cell Disease Therapy. He served as VP of Commercial Operations, Market Access and Supply Chain for Hyperion Therapeutics, until their acquisition by Horizon Pharma. Prior to Hyperion, Mr. Winn was the Head of Commercial Operations and Market Access at Belgium based ThromboGenics. He also held senior marketing, field and reimbursement roles for product launches at Amgen and Genentech. Mr. Winn has experience as a practice administrator in the Johns Hopkins Health System and as a reimbursement consultant at Andersen Consulting. He holds a MHS in Health Policy from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, an MBA from University of California Berkeley and a BS in Health Administration from University of Central Florida.

About SymBiosis Capital Management, LLC

SymBiosis Capital Management, LLC is an investment firm focused on advancing biotherapeutics innovations. Led by Chidozie Ugwumba, Managing Partner, along with an experienced team of professionals, SymBiosis invests across disease area, financing stage, and geography, with a focus on programs in, or about to enter, human trials. The firm currently manages a portfolio of more than 25 investments and has significant, long-term capital commitments to fund future investments. For more information, please visit www.symbiosis.vc or follow us on LinkedIn.

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