REDWOOD CITY, Calif., June 19, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Relypsa, Inc. (Nasdaq:RLYP), a biopharmaceutical company, today announced the election of Daniel K. Spiegelman, executive vice president and chief financial officer of BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc., and Kenneth J. Hillan, president and chief executive officer of Achaogen, Inc., to its board of directors following the company's annual meeting of stockholders held earlier today. Mr. Spiegelman and Dr. Hillan are well established biopharmaceutical executives with expertise in managing public companies through research and development to international commercial operations.
"As our company matures, we will benefit greatly from additional board members with significant operational experience and we are grateful to be able to add such talented individuals with proven track records to our board," said John A. Orwin, president and chief executive officer.
Following the annual meeting of stockholders, Mr. Spiegelman was appointed chairman of the board, succeeding Dr. Scott M. Rocklage, who along with previous board members Ronald M. Hunt and Jonathan T. Silverstein did not stand for re-election.
Mr. Orwin added, "I would also like to express my deep appreciation to our outgoing board members Scott, Ron and Jonathan for having confidence in, and a vision for, our polymer technology, for seeing Relypsa through the critical stages as a private company and ultimately guiding us through our initial public offering. Because of their leadership, we are poised to go through the regulatory process with our lead product candidate, patiromer, and to begin to establish our commercial organization in anticipation of introducing a new treatment alternative to patients with hyperkalemia."
Mr. Spiegelman, age 55, is executive vice president and chief financial officer at BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc., an international biopharmaceutical company with approximately 1,500 employees and sales in 40 countries. Prior to joining BioMarin in May 2012, Mr. Spiegelman served as a strategic and financial consultant to a portfolio of public and private life science companies from May 2009 to May 2012. From 1998 to 2009, Mr. Spiegelman served in various roles, most recently as senior vice president and chief financial officer, at CV Therapeutics, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company (acquired by Gilead Sciences, Inc.), where he was responsible for finance, accounting, investor relations, business development, and information systems. Earlier in his career, Mr. Spiegelman served in various roles at Genentech, Inc. (now a member of the Roche Group), a biotechnology company, most recently as Treasurer. Mr. Spiegelman also serves on the board of directors of Oncothyreon, Inc., a biotechnology company. Mr. Spiegelman received a B.A. from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Dr. Hillan, M.B., Ch.B., age 53, has served as president, chief executive officer and a member of the board of directors of Achaogen, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, since October 2011, and as Chief Medical Officer of Achaogen since April 2011. Prior to Achaogen, Dr. Hillan served in key leadership positions at Genentech, Inc. from August 1994 to April 2011. Dr. Hillan was responsible for numerous successful drug approvals and led the medical and scientific strategies for its Immunology, Tissue Growth and Repair drug portfolio. Dr. Hillan served in a number of key leadership positions in research and development, including senior vice president Clinical Development, Inflammation, vice president Immunology, Tissue Growth and Repair, vice president Development Sciences and vice president Research Operations and Pathology. Dr. Hillan also previously served as senior vice president and head of Clinical Development and Product Development Strategy in Asia-Pacific for Roche in Shanghai, China. Dr. Hillan received an M.B. Ch.B. (Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery) degree from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Glasgow, U.K. Dr. Hillan is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS), and a Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists (FRCPath).
About Relypsa, Inc.
Relypsa, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of non-absorbed polymeric drugs to treat disorders in the areas of renal, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. The company's two-part pivotal Phase 3 trial of its lead product candidate, patiromer, for the treatment of hyperkalemia, a life-threatening condition defined as abnormally elevated levels of potassium in the blood, has been completed and the primary and secondary endpoints were met. Relypsa has global royalty-free commercialization rights to patiromer, which has intellectual property protection in the U.S. until at least 2030. More information is available at www.relypsa.com.
Forward Looking Statements
To the extent that statements contained in this press release are not descriptions of historical facts regarding Relypsa, they are forward-looking statements reflecting the current beliefs and expectations of management made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements regarding the experience, expertise and expected impact of the new directors and Relypsa's ability to enter the regulatory process and establish a commercial organization for its product. Such forward-looking statements involve substantial risks and uncertainties that relate to future events and the actual results could differ significantly from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, among others, the uncertainties inherent in the clinical drug development process, including the regulatory approval process, the timing of the company's regulatory filings, the company's substantial dependence on patiromer, the company's commercialization plans and efforts and other matters that could affect the availability or commercial potential of patiromer. Relypsa undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements. For a further description of the risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from those expressed in these forward-looking statements, as well as risks relating to the business of the company in general, see Relypsa's current and future reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarterly period ended March 31, 2014.
CONTACT: Sylvia Wheeler V.P. Investor Relations and Corporate Affairs 650-421-9504 IR@relypsa.com