Ann D. Rhoads to Depart Company Following Transition Period; Biopharmaceutical Industry Veteran Michael P. Smith Appointed New CFO
EMERYVILLE, Calif., Jan. 05, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Zogenix, Inc. (NASDAQ:ZGNX), a pharmaceutical company developing therapies for the treatment of orphan and central nervous system (CNS) disorders, today announced that due to the Company’s ongoing relocation of all corporate functions, including finance, from San Diego, CA, to Emeryville, CA, Ann D. Rhoads, Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer and Secretary, will depart Zogenix following a transition period. Michael P. Smith, most recently Chief Financial Officer at Raptor Pharmaceutical Corp., has been appointed to fill the position, effective January 16, 2017. Ms. Rhoads will continue to serve as Zogenix’s Chief Financial Officer through January 16, 2017, and thereafter has agreed to provide consulting services to the Company in connection with the transition of duties to Mr. Smith, the completion of the 2016 year-end audit and related filings for the calendar year ended December 31, 2016.
Mr. Smith has over 18 years of experience in senior executive roles at publicly-traded and private biotechnology companies, including Chief Financial Officer, Chief Business Officer and General Manager of operating divisions. He has managed and led over $3 billion of transactions, including public company equity and debt financings, product and company acquisitions and strategic licenses and partnerships. Most recently, Mr. Smith served as Chief Financial Officer of Raptor, a global biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of transformative therapeutics for rare, debilitating and often fatal diseases that was recently acquired by Horizon Pharma plc. In this role, he was responsible for the finance, accounting, corporate development, corporate strategy, intellectual property, and information management business functions, and reported directly to the Chief Executive Officer. Prior to Raptor, Mr. Smith served as Chief Financial and Business Advisor at Catalyst Biosciences from May 2012 to January 2015. Previously, he was Vice President of Business Development at iPierian, Inc., and from June 2006 to July 2009, he served as Head of Business Development and Chief Financial Officer of Memory Pharmaceuticals Corporation.
“I would like to thank Ann for her nearly seven years of dedicated service to Zogenix,” said Stephen J. Farr, Ph.D., President and CEO. “During this time, she played key roles in our initial public offering, subsequent financings and business development activities, including the in-licensing of our lead product candidate, ZX008 for the treatment of Dravet syndrome. On behalf of the Board, and everyone at Zogenix, I especially thank Ann for her important leadership during the recently completed transitioning of the Company’s finance function from San Diego to our corporate headquarters in Emeryville. We wish Ann well in her future endeavors. I would also like to welcome Mike to the Zogenix team. His operations leadership experience in finance, project management, sales, marketing, corporate development, investor relations, intellectual property, and strategic alliances will serve us well as we begin to prepare for the potential commercialization of ZX008.”
“I am pleased to be joining Zogenix at such an exciting time in the Company’s development,” said Mr. Smith. “With a number of potentially value enhancing milestones upcoming, including the availability of Phase 3 top-line data for ZX008 in Dravet syndrome, 2017 will be a pivotal year for Zogenix. I look forward to leveraging my experience and track record of leading key business functions, building high performance organizations and managing transformative strategic transactions to deliver the next phase of growth for Zogenix and its stakeholders.”
Mr. Smith received a B.S. in Commerce from the University of Virginia and an M.B.A. from the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley.
Disclosure Regarding Inducement Award to Michael Smith
Zogenix will issue an inducement award of 135,000 stock options to Mr. Smith, effective upon his commencement of employment on January 16, 2017 under Zogenix's Employment Inducement Equity Incentive Award Plan. The options will have a ten-year term and an exercise price equal to the fair market value of Zogenix common stock on the date of grant. The options will vest over a four-year period, with 25% of the options vesting on the first anniversary of the date of grant and the remainder vesting in equal monthly installments over the three years thereafter. The award was approved by the independent compensation committee of Zogenix's board of directors and will be granted as an inducement material to Mr. Smith entering into employment with Zogenix in accordance with Nasdaq Marketplace Rule 5635(c)(4).
Zogenix, Inc. (Nasdaq:ZGNX) is a pharmaceutical company committed to developing and commercializing CNS therapies that address specific clinical needs for people living with orphan and other CNS disorders who need innovative treatment alternatives to improve their daily functioning.
For more information, visit www.zogenix.com.
Forward Looking Statements
Zogenix cautions you that statements included in this press release that are not a description of historical facts are forward-looking statements. Words such as "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "indicates," "will," "intends," "potential," "suggests," "assuming," "designed" and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements are based on the company's current beliefs and expectations. These forward-looking statements include statements regarding the potential commercialization of ZX008; the timing of top-line results from the Phase 3 clinical trial of ZX008 in Dravet syndrome and other 2017 milestones; and the timing of any submission of a new drug application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration or comparable market authorization filing in Europe. The inclusion of forward-looking statements should not be regarded as a representation by Zogenix that any of its plans will be achieved. Actual results may differ from those set forth in this release due to the risks and uncertainties inherent in Zogenix's business, including, without limitation: the uncertainties associated with the clinical development and regulatory approval of product candidates such as ZX008, including potential delays in the commencement, enrollment and completion of clinical trials; the potential that earlier clinical trials and studies may not be predictive of future results; Zogenix's reliance on third parties to conduct its clinical trials, enroll patients, manufacture its preclinical and clinical drug supplies and manufacture commercial supplies of its drug products, if approved; unexpected adverse side effects or inadequate therapeutic efficacy of ZX008 that could limit approval and/or commercialization, or that could result in recalls or product liability claims; Zogenix's ability to fully comply with numerous federal, state and local laws and regulatory requirements, as well as rules and regulations outside the United States, that apply to its product development activities; Fast Track designation may not result in an expedited regulatory review process; the potential for distraction of management related to the transition of management responsibilities; and other risks described in Zogenix's prior press releases as well as in public periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof, and Zogenix undertakes no obligation to revise or update this press release to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof. All forward-looking statements are qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement. This caution is made under the safe harbor provisions of Section 21E of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.
Investors: Andrew McDonald
Founding Partner, LifeSci Advisors LLC
646-597-6987 | Andrew@lifesciadvisors.com