The Discovery Labs Appoints Joerg Ahlgrimm as President and Chief Operating Officer
The Discovery Labs Taps Lonza Exec to Lead Operations
The Discovery Labs has announced the appointment of industry veteran Joerg Ahlgrimm as the President and Chief Operating Officer.
Ahlgrimm is an Operations and Supply Chain Management Executive who has served in multi-billion dollar companies operating in biotech, vaccines, pharmaceutical and medical device markets. He is the former Head of Global Operations Pharma and Biotech at Lonza AG where he was responsible for 37 sites on four continents. He focuses on strategy development and execution management, productivity improvement, organizational development, team building, and leadership in the implementation of “best practices.”
Ahlgrimm will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of The Discovery Labs. Central to his responsibilities will be oversight of all operations for the Center for Breakthrough Medicines (CBM) and Testing Centers of America (TCA) – two core Discovery Labs platform companies. This mission includes staffing more than 1,700 people for CBM and TCA – ranging from manufacturing specialists to PhD scientists.
All revenue-generating functions at CBM and TCA, including program management, supply chain, engineering, manufacturing, process development and testing will report to Mr. Ahlgrimm. Ahlgrimm will also ensure the successful execution of the rollout of TCA’s national COVID testing program. Ahlgrimm will lead both companies’ operations to efficiently meet the needs of a growing list of global biopharma customers.
“With Joerg, we have added an industry titan with impeccable credentials to oversee our operations,” said Brian O’Neill, Co-Founder and Executive Chairman, The Discovery Labs. “To attract someone of Joerg’s caliber means we have the ability to scale up and manage high-volume cell and gene manufacturing. The Discovery Labs will benefit immensely from the leadership of this seasoned, global pharmaceutical executive.”
Ahlgrimm brings over 20 years of expertise in pharmaceutical operations, supply chain and manufacturing to The Discovery Labs. Prior to joining the company, Ahlgrimm was head of global operations pharma biotech and nutrition at Lonza. Before Lonza, Ahlgrimm was head, global manufacturing for Baxter Healthcare, BioScience Division/Baxalta Inc. In this senior leadership role, he led Baxalta’s internal and external manufacturing network as well as plasma collection organization covering 10,000 employees, generating $6 billion in sales.
“I am thrilled to join The Discovery Labs’ management team because I share their passion for saving lives,” said Joerg Ahlgrimm. “In my 20 years of working in the pharmaceutical industry, I have never seen an opportunity like we have now. Innovations in cell and gene therapy is a transformative moment. By solving the manufacturing bottleneck, we can save thousands of lives while leading a revolution that will transform healthcare.”
Commenting on the appointment, Audrey Greenberg, Co-founder and Executive Managing Director, The Discovery Labs, said, “Joerg’s experience at Baxter and Lonza, provides him with a unique perspective to see both sides of the CDMO equation. His experience leading a large international CDMO operation on the contract manufacturing side, while understanding the requirements of global pharmaceutical companies, will enable us to develop highly targeted service offerings to meet the specific requirements of our clients.”
Ahlgrimm’s passion to save and sustain lives will help advance hundreds of cell and gene therapies in various stages of clinical development. His appointment accelerates the progress of all aspects of The Discovery Labs operations including process development, manufacturing, program management, supply chain, engineering, and testing.
The Discovery Labs, LLC is a global company offering world-class, state-of-the-art manufacturing, laboratory, office and incubator space for companies working on breakthrough treatments in the cell and gene therapy. Our first location in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania is 1 million square feet set on 200 acres. The site has over $1 billion in infrastructure including a central utility plant with dual grid electrical feed and an 8 megawatt backup generator. Our King of Prussia location also offers an amenity rich environment with a 14,000 square foot fitness center, restaurant, $10 million conference facility and a 250 seat auditorium. The design features include 60 foot soaring atriums, an abundance of natural light and 16 foot – 20 foot celling heights.
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