Christopher A. Viehbacher
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Chris has over 25 years of experience in the biotech and pharmaceutical industries. He is the former CEO and Member of the Board of Directors of Sanofi, a Fortune 50 Biopharmaceutical company based in Paris with sales of over $35 billion and a market capitalization of over $100 billion.
During Chris’s six year tenure Sanofi underwent a significant business transformation, completed over $30 billion of acquisitions, most notably that of Genzyme, and developed a novel approach to building a pipeline of new medicines. Chris was also the Chairman of the Board of Genzyme in Boston.
In 2015 Chris joined the Board of Directors of Pure Tech as well as the Board of Vedanta, a Pure Tech portfolio company. He also joined the Board of Trustees of Northeastern University.
Prior to joining Sanofi, Chris spent 20 years with GlaxoSmithKline in Germany, Canada, France and, ultimately, the US as President of GSK’s North American pharmaceutical division. Chris was a Member of the Board of Directors of GSK plc in London and Co-President of GSK’s Portfolio Management Board. Chris began his career with Price Waterhouse after graduating with a degree in Commerce at Queen’s University in Canada. Chris qualified as a Chartered Accountant while with Price Waterhouse in Canada and later with PW in Hamburg, Germany.
Chris has been a strong advocate for the healthcare industry. He has co-chaired with Bill Gates, the CEO Roundtable on Neglected Diseases, which led to over 1.3 billion people being treated for such diseases free of charge. He continues to chair the CEO Roundtable on Cancer, helping companies to reduce the risk of cancer to their employees in the United States and China. He was the Chairman of the Board of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America in Washington as well as President of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations in Brussels. At the World Economic Forum at Davos, Chris was a past Chair of the Health Governors and co-chaired an initiative with industry, public health and government stakeholders to create a Global Charter for Healthy Living. He is also a past member of the International Business Council. Chris has in the past served on various advisory groups at MIT, Duke University and Queen’s University at Kingston, Ontario.
Chris has received the Pasteur Foundation Award for outstanding commitment to safeguarding and improving health worldwide. He has also received France’s highest civilian honour, the Legion d’Honneur. Various awards from the Thompson Reuters/ Extel Investor Survey, including top CEO and top European Company, have recognized his commitment to investor relations.