Stem Cell Therapeutics Announces the Appointment of Mr. David Allan as Executive Chairman and Dr. Henry Friesen as a Member of the Board of Directors
News Jul 04, 2011
Stem Cell Therapeutics Corp has announced the appointment of Mr. David Allan as Executive Chairman of the Corporation to take immediate effect. Mr. Allan will be a member of the Board of Directors of the Corporation and be responsible for the company's operations.
"Stem Cell Therapeutics is one of only two public companies in Canada, to my knowledge, in the stem cell/regenerative arena, an arena that has a crying need for capital" said David Allan.
Allan continued, "With its roots based in the exceptional science of the discoveries of Dr. Samuel Weiss I believe that SCT is poised to become an important factor in translating stem cell research into medicines in this country and internationally. In an area as dynamic as stem cell research, into which enormous quantities of taxpayers' money is invested, there is a limited quantity of venture capital available for its development and an unsatisfactory number of public receptor companies to carry the huge quantity of research required beyond the bench. While maximizing the value for shareholders of Dr. Weiss' work, around which SCT was established, I intend to lead this company to becoming one of the premier development vehicles for stem cell/regenerative medicine research. In Ontario alone this past week was the announcement of the formation of the Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine extending the Rob and Cheryl McEwen founding of the Centre. Following this the McEwens established another initiative in this critical field with the "Stem Cell City" website. These events confirm the enormous need for development capabilities in the life sciences - and particularly for stem cell/regenerative medicine research for which there are no public receptor companies in this nation."
Dr. Weiss is a Professor at and the Director of the Hotchkiss Brain Institute and Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research Scientist in the Departments of Cell Biology & Anatomy and Pharmacology & Therapeutics at the University of Calgary, Faculty of Medicine. He was a recipient in 2008 of the Canada Gairdner Award for his seminal discovery of adult neural stem cells in the mammalian brain and its importance in nerve cell regeneration.
Stem Cell Therapeutics has announced the appointment of Dr. Henry Friesen to the Board of Directors. In addition to having been the Chairman of the Gairdner Foundation Board, Dr. Friesen had previously been recognized for his discovery of human prolactin, a hormone that Dr. Weiss has subsequently made a cornerstone of his approach to therapy for multiple sclerosis, one of the important areas of development at SCT.
Dr. Friesen, was the President of the Canadian Government's Medical Research Council, and the architect and lead champion for the creation the Canadian Institutes for Health Research, President of the National Cancer Institute of Canada and President of the Canadian Society for Clinical Investigation. He is the Past Founding Chair of Genome Canada.
A Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, Dr. Friesen was named a Companion of the Order of Canada and was inducted into the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame in 2001 and, later the Order of Manitoba. He was also awarded the Gairdner Foundation Wightman Award; the McLaughlin Medal of the Royal Society of Canada; and the Koch Medal: the highest award of the Endocrine Society.
He was presented with the Frederic Newton Gisborne Starr Award by the Canadian Medical Association, the association's highest award, in 2006. Dr. Friesen also holds eight Honorary Doctorates from Canadian universities.
"Mr. Allan has demonstrated a remarkable talent for resilience while leading an internationally-listed biotech company for the past 13 years and for his capacity to have molecules in development advanced along the clinical pathway, raise capital and acquire companies", said Mr. Dean Peterson, Chairman of SCT.
Mr. Peterson continued, "We enthusiastically anticipate that these demonstrated capabilities will lead SCT along a vigorous development pathway for its portfolio and further expand its interests into the prospectively enormous field of the development of products from stem cell research."
Mr. Allan has been Chairman of the Board of YM BioSciences Inc. since its incorporation in 1994 and served as its Chief Executive Officer from 1998 to November 2010. He is a board member of a number of public and private companies primarily in the life sciences and is lead director at DiaMedica Inc.
He is a former member of the Awards Selection Committee for the Networks of Centers of Excellence in Canada, Governor of The Toronto Stock Exchange and founding and sunset Chair of the Toronto Stock Exchange Market Access Implementation Committee that created access for small and medium-sized enterprises to Canada's principal capital market. He has been a member, and working group Chair, of the Ontario Biotechnology Advisory Board and is currently a member of BioteCanada's Emerging Companies Advisory Board and of the Board of Directors of Life Sciences Ontario, the industry organizations.
Stem Cell Therapeutics also wishes to announce the issuance of stock options to Messrs. Allan and Friesen. SCT has issued an aggregate of 4,350,000 options to purchase common shares of the company at an exercise price of C$0.10 per share.
The options granted to Mr. Allan will expire no later than June 28, 2013 and the options granted to Dr. Friesen expire no later than June 28, 2016, in each case subject to applicable vesting provisions. These options were awarded in accordance with the company's Stock Option Plan.
The appointment of Messrs. Allan and Friesen to the Board of Directors is subject to the approval of the TSX Venture Exchange.