Member Spotlight: Veronique Riethuisen, Senior Vice President, Global BD & Alliance Management at IPSEN

At FACCNE we are very proud of our members and they are our priority. That’s why, regularly we will shine the spotlight on a member and share with you his/her professional journey, advice or anything else they would like to share with us. It’s their time to shine!

This March, we are pleased to introduce you to Veronique Riethuisen, Senior Vice President, Global BD & Alliance Management at IPSEN. While IPSEN has been a member of FACCNE for many years, Veronique has recently been appointed as FACCNE’s main contact.

1-Tell us a bit about yourself, your professional journey and your current role at IPSEN

I head Global Business Development and Strategic Alliance Management at Ipsen.  I oversee both the team responsible for securing new partnerships and licensing assets as well as the team managing those relationships once a contract is in place.  

I started my career as an analyst in the M&A department of a chemical company that was eventually acquired by Pharmacia; and that’s how I made the leap to biotech.

Very early on my manager asked my help with the negotiation—of a divestiture of a manufacturing site.  Afterwards, he gave me the feedback that I was a natural. I enjoyed it so much that I focused my career in BD and M&A.

I never imagined an economist from Belgium would end up in the United States negotiating acquisitions, facilitating joint ventures, setting up new companies and now coaching and teaching the fundamentals of business development at Bio to the next generation of BD professionals.

It has been an exciting professional journey.

2-    How do IPSEN’s activities help patients now and into the future?

Ipsen is a patient-focused organization.  We’re very close to the patient communities we serve, whether it’s liver cancer, Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressive (FOP) organizations in rare disease, or dysplasia organizations for Dysport®.

To that end, we continuously monitor scientific progress that has the potential to help address unmet medical needs or improve on existing therapies that could meaningfully impact patients.

On the alliance side, we focus on new countries where hope to get our treatments to patients.  At the same time, we also investigate new possible indications for our medicines. A great example of this is with Decapeptyl®, where we’ve had a 30 year partnership with Debiopharm and are still finding new indications and new geographies to bring this important treatment to the hands of patients around the world.

3-    In your opinion, how do you think FACCNE can efficiently help French-American businesses and individuals settle and grow in the local ecosystem?

FACCNE is a great vehicle for connecting companies—especially new businesses—that are doing business or interested in doing business in the Boston and Cambridge ecosystem.  FACCNE helps navigate the differences between doing business here and in France. One important difference between both locales is that here, to be successful, a company needs to be part of the ecosystem and have connections with scientific and academic institutions like MIT, Boston University and Harvard—FACCNE can help introduce them and open a door.  

FACCNE also helps promote new entrepreneurs who want to come to Boston.  Here too, introductions are critical to their success. This ecosystem isn’t the easiest to break into otherwise.

One of FACCNE’s greatest strengths is helping the Boston-Cambridge community appreciate French and French speaking businesses, and the expertise and innovation they bring to the American ecosystem.  It’s a great organization, one that is highly valuable to companies that comprise its membership.

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