Mesoblast (MESO) Names New Vice Chair

September 1, 2016 6:04 AM EDT

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Mesoblast Limited (Nasdaq: MESO) announced that Mr William (Bill) A. Burns, former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Roche Pharmaceuticals, has been appointed Vice Chairman of Mesoblast. In this role, Mr Burns will focus his considerable pharmaceutical industry expertise on activities relating to execution of major strategic partnerships and corporate transactions.

Mr Burns brings to Mesoblast extensive international commercial, business development, and operational experience in the pharmaceutical industry. From 1991-1998, he was Global Head of Strategic Marketing and Business Development at F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd. From 2000-2009, Mr Burns was a Member of the Corporate Executive Committee of the Roche Group and from 2001-2009, he was CEO of Roche Pharmaceuticals. During this time, Mr Burns had significant involvement in the privatization of Genentech, the integration of Boehringer Mannheim and the negotiations that resulted in Roche becoming a majority owner of Chugai Pharmaceuticals in Japan. Mr Burns has been a non-executive Director of Chugai Pharmaceuticals (2001-2014), Genentech (2004-2014), Roche (2010-2014), and Shire Pharmaceuticals plc since 2010, most recently as Senior Independent Non-Executive Director. His other key appointments in healthcare include roles as Vice Chairman, Vestergaard, Governor and Trustee for Wellcome Trust, Trustee for the Institute of Cancer Research, London, and Scientific Advisory Board Member for the University of Cologne/Bonn Center for Integrated Oncology.

Mesoblast Chairman Brian Jamieson said: “As the Company has multiple advanced product candidates approaching commercialization, we are very pleased that Bill Burns has agreed to expand his role on the Board to focus on delivery of optimal transactional outcomes.”

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