WALTHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Deciphera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:DCPH), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on addressing key mechanisms of tumor drug resistance, today announced that after a successful tenure since 2014, Michael D. Taylor, Ph.D. will retire as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company effective March 18, 2019, when Dr. Taylor will transition to senior advisor to the Company for six months; Dr. Taylor will also remain a member of the Company’s Board of Directors. Steve Hoerter, a current member of the Company’s Board of Directors, has been appointed as Deciphera’s next President and Chief Executive Officer.
Mr. Hoerter joins the Company from Agios, a commercial-stage oncology company, where he was Chief Commercial Officer. Mr. Hoerter has more than 25 years of global pharmaceutical and biotechnology sales, product launch and general management experience, having held senior commercial positions at leading oncology companies including Agios, Clovis, Roche, Genentech, Chiron, and Eli Lilly.
“Under Mike’s leadership since 2014, Deciphera has made tremendous progress: transitioning from an early-stage private company into a public company with two ongoing pivotal Phase 3 studies, multiple promising clinical product candidates, and a robust discovery engine. On behalf of the entire Board of Directors, we extend our sincerest gratitude for Mike’s leadership and commitment to delivering on the Company’s mission,” said James A. Bristol, Ph.D., Chairman of the Deciphera Board of Directors. “This leadership succession comes as Deciphera prepares to transition into a commercial-stage oncology company, a setting in which Steve has an impressive, proven track record of success. Steve’s significant contributions as an existing member of our Board of Directors give us great confidence that he will be an exceptional CEO who will lead Deciphera to continued success as we seek to become a commercial oncology company.”
“It has been a privilege to serve as Deciphera’s Chief Executive Officer. I am very proud of what our team has accomplished over the last five years,” said Dr. Taylor. “Having worked closely with Steve since he joined as a Board member, I am confident that he is the right person to lead Deciphera as we move toward our next goal of becoming a commercial oncology company. I wish Steve the best of luck as CEO and look forward to working with him in my new role as a senior advisor and continued service on the Board.”
“This is an exciting time at Deciphera as we prepare for the read-out of our first Phase 3 trial of ripretinib and the potential transition to a commercial-stage company,” said Mr. Hoerter. “I am honored to succeed Mike as CEO, and to lead Deciphera as we rapidly advance our portfolio of transformative product candidates with the goal of improving the lives of people living with cancer. Together with the great team at Deciphera, I look forward to building on the strong science and patient-focused culture of the Company.”
Mr. Hoerter brings to Deciphera more than 25 years of global pharmaceutical and biotechnology experience, having held senior commercial and general management positions at leading oncology companies. As Chief Commercial Officer at Agios Pharmaceuticals, Inc. he built and led the team responsible for the commercialization of the company’s portfolio of first-in-class medicines for oncology and rare genetic diseases. Prior to joining Agios in 2016, Mr. Hoerter was Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer at Clovis Oncology, Inc. Before joining Clovis, Mr. Hoerter was General Manager and Management Center Head at Roche for the Sub-Saharan Africa and Indian Ocean Region, based in Johannesburg, South Africa. From 2005 to 2010, he held a variety of positions at Genentech, Inc., including serving on the senior leadership team for Genentech’s BioOncology business. Prior to that, Mr. Hoerter held commercial roles at Chiron Corporation and Eli Lilly and Company in the U.S., Europe, and Africa. Mr. Hoerter currently serves on the Board of Directors at Constellation Pharmaceuticals and was previously a member of the Board of Directors of Ignyta, Inc., a biotechnology company focused on precision medicine in oncology, until the company’s acquisition by Roche in 2017. Mr. Hoerter received his B.A. from Bucknell University, M.B.A. from Tilburg University in the Netherlands, and M.S. in management from Purdue University.
About Deciphera Pharmaceuticals
Deciphera Pharmaceuticals is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on improving the lives of cancer patients by tackling key mechanisms of drug resistance that limit the rate and/or durability of response to existing cancer therapies. Our small molecule drug candidates are directed against an important family of enzymes called kinases, known to be directly involved in the growth and spread of many cancers. We use our deep understanding of kinase biology together with a proprietary chemistry library to purposefully design compounds that maintain kinases in a “switched off” or inactivated conformation. These investigational therapies comprise tumor-targeted agents designed to address therapeutic resistance causing mutations and immuno-targeted agents designed to control the activation of immunokinases that suppress critical immune system regulators, such as macrophages. We have used our platform to develop a diverse pipeline of tumor-targeted and immuno-targeted drug candidates designed to improve outcomes for patients with cancer by improving the quality, rate and/or durability of their responses to treatment.
Availability of Other Information About Deciphera Pharmaceuticals
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Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended, including, without limitation, statements regarding our expectations regarding timing of reporting top-line data from our INVICTUS pivotal Phase 3 study, the potential for ripretinib to treat cancers such as GIST and other possible indications, launch preparations and expectations for a possible commercial launch of ripretinib, if approved, and expectations regarding the Company’s success as a commercial oncology company. The words “may,” “will,” “could,” “would,” “should,” “expect,” “plan,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “believe,” “estimate,” “predict,” “project,” “potential,” “goal,” “continue,” “target” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain these identifying words. Any forward-looking statements in this press release are based on management’s current expectations and beliefs and are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and important factors that may cause actual events or results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by any forward-looking statements contained in this press release, including, without limitation, risks and uncertainties related to the delay of any current or planned clinical studies or the development of our drug candidates, including ripretinib (DCC-2618), rebastinib, and DCC-3014, our advancement of multiple early-stage and later-stage efforts, our ability to successfully demonstrate the efficacy and safety of our drug candidates including in later-stage studies, the preclinical and clinical results for our drug candidates, which may not support further development of such drug candidates, our efforts to scale up drug product manufacturing, our ability to implement commercial readiness, actions of regulatory agencies, any or all of which may affect the initiation, timing and progress of clinical studies and other risks identified in our SEC filings, including our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2018, and subsequent filings with the SEC. We caution you not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date they are made. We disclaim any obligation to publicly update or revise any such statements to reflect any change in expectations or in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statements may be based, or that may affect the likelihood that actual results will differ from those set forth in the forward-looking statements. Any forward-looking statements contained in this press release represent our views only as of the date hereof and should not be relied upon as representing its views as of any subsequent date. We explicitly disclaim any obligation to update any forward-looking statements.