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Zymeworks Announces Additional Leadership Appointments

  • Dr. Jeffrey Smith named Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer
  • Dr. John Fann promoted to Senior VP, Process Sciences
  • Seven new Vice Presidents appointed, underscoring commitment to leadership development

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Jan. 04, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Zymeworks Inc. (Nasdaq: ZYME), a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing a diverse pipeline of novel, multifunctional biotherapeutics to improve the standard of care for difficult-to-treat diseases, today announced significant additions to its leadership team. These additions to the leadership team highlight Zymeworks' commitment to nurturing and advancing internal talent to key leadership roles while strengthening the capabilities and experience of the organization.

"At Zymeworks, we recognize that our greatest asset is our people. Elevating talented individuals is a reflection of their strong performance for the company, our confidence in their abilities and the emphasis we place on cultivating leaders from within. As we continue to grow, their expanded roles will play crucial parts in advancing our ‘5 by 5’ development programs into the clinic in 2024 and 2025, planning to develop our ADVANCE preclinical programs into clinical studies by 2027 and helping to form the necessary collaborations and partnerships for our emerging product portfolio,” said Kenneth Galbraith, Chair and Chief Executive Officer of Zymeworks.

Leadership Team

Dr. Jeffrey Smith has been promoted to Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, where he will play a key role in leading the clinical development of our early-stage programs and overseeing our integrated global early-stage development group.

Dr. John Fann has been promoted to Senior Vice President, Process Sciences, where he will continue to play a key role in supporting the advancement of our new product candidates from preclinical studies into clinical trials.

In addition, the following individuals have been appointed to the leadership team:

  • Raquera Brown, Vice President, Quality
  • Bijal Desai, Vice President, Finance & Strategy
  • Lucas Donigian, Vice President, Business & Commercial Development
  • Dr. Lindsey Foulkes, Vice President, Corporate Development
  • Cathie Graham, Vice President, Legal
  • Laura O’Connor, Vice President, Human Resources & DEI
  • Dr. Joe Woolery, Vice President, Early-Stage Development (Americas)

“These outstanding individuals have consistently demonstrated exceptional leadership abilities, commitment, and a deep understanding of our business objectives and our commitment to patients,” Mr. Galbraith added. “After reducing the management team to a small core group upon my appointment in early 2022, these new appointments reflect the additional management resources necessary to manage and advance our emerging product portfolio.”

Additional information on the background and experience of these individuals is available on the Company’s website at

About Zymeworks Inc.

Zymeworks is a global biotechnology company committed to the discovery, development, and commercialization of novel, multifunctional biotherapeutics. Zymeworks’ mission is to make a meaningful difference in the lives of people impacted by difficult-to-treat cancers and other diseases. The Company’s complementary therapeutic platforms and fully integrated drug development engine provide the flexibility and compatibility to precisely engineer and develop highly differentiated antibody-based therapeutic candidates. Zymeworks engineered and developed zanidatamab, a HER2-targeted bispecific antibody using the Company’s proprietary Azymetric™ technology. Zymeworks has entered into separate agreements with BeiGene, Ltd. (BeiGene) and Jazz Pharmaceuticals Ireland Limited (Jazz), granting each exclusive rights to develop and commercialize zanidatamab in different territories. Zanidatamab is currently being evaluated in multiple global clinical trials as a potential best-in-class treatment for patients with HER2-expressing cancers. Zymeworks is rapidly advancing a deep pipeline of product candidates based on its experience and capabilities in both antibody drug conjugates and multispecific antibody therapeutics across multiple novel targets in indications that represent areas of significant unmet medical need. In addition to Zymeworks’ wholly-owned pipeline, its therapeutic platforms have been further leveraged through strategic partnerships with global biopharmaceutical companies. For information about Zymeworks, visit and follow @ZymeworksInc on X.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

This press release includes “forward-looking statements” or information within the meaning of the applicable securities legislation, including Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Forward-looking statements in this press release include, but are not limited to, statements regarding Zymeworks’ expectations regarding implementation of its strategic priorities; the timing of and results of interactions with regulators; Zymeworks’ clinical development of its product candidates and enrollment in its clinical trials; expectations regarding future regulatory filings and approvals and the timing thereof; potential therapeutic effects of zanidatamab and Zymeworks’ other product candidates; commercial potential of technology platforms and product candidates; Zymeworks’ preclinical pipeline; Zymeworks’ ability to maintain existing and execute new collaborations and partnerships and other information that is not historical information. When used herein, words such as “plan”, “believe”, “expect”, “may”, “continue”, “anticipate”, “potential”, “will”, “progress”, and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. In addition, any statements or information that refer to expectations, beliefs, plans, projections, objectives, performance or other characterizations of future events or circumstances, including any underlying assumptions, are forward-looking. All forward-looking statements are based upon Zymeworks’ current expectations and various assumptions. Zymeworks believes there is a reasonable basis for its expectations and beliefs, but they are inherently uncertain. Zymeworks may not realize its expectations, and its beliefs may not prove correct. Actual results could differ materially from those described or implied by such forward-looking statements as a result of various factors, including, without limitation: clinical trials may not demonstrate safety and efficacy of any of Zymeworks’ or its collaborators’ product candidates; any of Zymeworks’ or its partners’ product candidates may fail in development, may not receive required regulatory approvals, or may be delayed to a point where they are not commercially viable; the impact of pandemics and other health crises on Zymeworks’ business, research and clinical development plans and timelines and results of operations, including impact on its clinical trial sites, collaborators, and contractors who act for or on Zymeworks’ behalf; inability to maintain or enter into new partnerships or strategic collaborations; regulatory agencies may impose additional requirements or delay the initiation of clinical trials; the impact of new or changing laws and regulations; market conditions; and the other risks described under “Risk Factors” in Zymeworks’ Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for its quarter ended September 30, 2023 (a copy of which may be obtained at and

Although Zymeworks believes that such forward-looking statements are reasonable, there can be no assurance they will prove to be correct. Investors should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. The above assumptions, risks and uncertainties are not exhaustive. Forward-looking statements are made as of the date hereof and, except as may be required by law, Zymeworks undertakes no obligation to update, republish, or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect new information, future events or circumstances, or to reflect the occurrences of unanticipated events.

Investor inquiries:
Shrinal Inamdar
Director, Investor Relations
(604) 678-1388

Media inquiries:
Diana Papove
Senior Director, Corporate Communications
(604) 678-1388

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