2014 JP Morgan Recap: An Insider’s View

Wednesday, January 22 2014
4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Location: MassBio, 300 Technology Square, 8th Floor, Cambridge, MA

The annual JP Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco is one of the largest and most informative healthcare investment symposiums in the industry.  It brings together global industry leaders, emerging fast-growth companies, innovative technology creators and members of the investment community.  Each year hundreds of companies, both public and private, deliver presentations to over 4,000 investors.  In addition, thousands in biotech descend upon San Francisco to network, attend meetings and gain an inside view even if they can’t secure an official conference invite. 

Given the state of our industry, the Conference is more relevant than ever.  So what do you do if you can’t make it to San Francisco this January 13 – 16th? Join us for a recap of the week and hear from a select group of Conference insiders.


  • Bruce Booth, Partner, Atlas Venture
  • Donna LaVoie, President & CEO, Lavoie Group
  • Reid Leonard, Managing Director, Merck Research Ventures Fund at Merck
  • Ron Renaud, Jr, President & CEO, Idenix Pharmaceuticals


  • Marc Cote, Partner & COO, Accellient Partners
  • John Reilly, VP Business Development, Tetragenetics, Inc.

Who should attend? Anyone in biotech looking to stay abreast of current developments affecting our industry:

  • Main themes from 2014
  • Expectations for our industry
  • Key takeaways
  • What you missed and what you need to know
  • How to get the most value from your visit to JPM


This Forum is presented by the Entrepreneur's University and Business Development & Finance Forum Working Groups. 


Speaker Bios:

Bruce Booth, Partner, Atlas Venture

Bruce Booth is a partner in the life sciences group and focuses on novel biopharmaceutical products, therapeutic platforms, and innovative biomedical technologies.

Bruce has been instrumental in forming unique, innovative, and capital efficient structures for drug discovery and development.  He co-founded miRagen Therapeutics and Nimbus Discovery, and served as acting CEO of Nimbus while incubated at Atlas’ offices.  Together with Peter Barrett, Bruce seeded and incubated Zafgen, and identified and facilitated the successful in-licensing of the lead drug program.  In addition to these companies, he currently serves on the boards of Bicycle Therapeutics, and ProtAffin Biotechnologie, and was previously on the boards of past Atlas companies Avila Therapeutics (acquired by Celgene), Stromedix (acquired by Biogen), Prestwick (acquired by Biovail), and Proprius (acquired by Cypress Biosciences).

Prior to joining Atlas in 2005, Bruce was an investor with Caxton Health Holdings and before that, a consultant at McKinsey & Company, where he helped to build the Pharma R&D practice.

Bruce serves on UCB Pharma’s Scientific Advisory Board as well as Pfizer’s Healthcare “R&D 2020″ Innovation Think Tank, and participates on several other advisory boards for academic medical centers.  Bruce is also a trustee of the New York Academy of Medicine, where he serves on the executive committee as treasurer.  He recently joined the Science Exchange’s Reproducibility Initiative Advisory Board, focused on improving the reliability of translational research.

Bruce blogs about life science venture capital topics at LifeSciVC.com, which is also syndicated on Forbes.  He has published numerous scientific papers and has authored various biotech venture capital review articles, including several in Nature Biotechnology.  In 2010, Bruce was named to Boston Business Journal’s “40 under 40” list.

As a British Marshall Scholar, Bruce received a D.Phil. (PhD) in molecular immunology from Oxford University.  His work focused on the study of HIV and tumor immune responses.  He received a BS in biochemistry, summa cum laude, from The Pennsylvania State University.

Bruce enjoys fly fishing, skiing, snowboarding, and running.  He lives in Wellesley, MA with his wife and three wonderful kids.


Marc Cote, Partner and the Chief Operating Officer of Accellient Partners

Marc Cote is a Co-founder, Partner and the Chief Operating Officer of Accellient Partners a drug development consulting firm.  He is also the co-founder and the Chief Financial Officer of Synchroneuron Inc, a VC-backed clinical stage biotech company that is engaged in developing new therapies for tardive dyskinesia (TD) and other related movement disorders.

Prior to Accellient, he was the Chief Operating Officer of Aptuit’s global consulting practice.  Before that he was with Dunkin’ Brands where he held a variety of finance, accounting and shared services roles before leaving as Vice President of Finance and Shared Services.  Marc started his career in the Entrepreneurial Services Group at Ernst & Young in Boston where he spent 8 years servicing clients in venture capital, biotech, high-tech and consulting.

Marc is also a member of Boston Harbor Angels.


Donna LaVoie, President & CEO, Lavoie Group

Donna has over 20 years in business strategy, corporate communications, public and investor relations. Since starting the agency in 2001, Donna’s efforts combine building the agency’s pharmaceutical and life science practices, strategic direction and core competencies. Under Donna’s leadership, LaVoie Group has become recognized as a top 25 independent healthcare agencies in the US. For the past four years, LaVoie Group has been recognized by the League of American Communications Professionals for agency awards. Over the last five years, the firm has received 19 prestigious PR and marketing awards for their efforts on behalf of their clients.

Donna’s focus is in helping clients build their companies and brands during transformational times. Her approach centers on bringing a credible voice with key audiences while providing strategic counsel that builds value. She brings knowledge of all aspects of the corporate marketing effort and the integration of strategic options to the overall mix. One of her core strengths is the development of strong relationships among industry, key opinion leaders, venture, and investor communities and media.

Prior to leading LaVoie Group as President and CEO, Donna was a communications and investor relations practitioner, having spent her career in senior communications and investor relations roles at leading biopharmaceutical and technology firms such as Cambridge Technology Partners (now Novell, Inc.), Genzyme Corporation (now Sanofi) and Alkermes.

She is a frequent speaker and has been published on a variety of subjects including integrated and crisis communications, orphan communications, investor and public relations best practices. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Management from Lesley College and has completed a strategic marketing program at The Wharton School. Donna is also a member of the Senior Roundtable at the National Investor Relations Institute, is a past co-Chair of MassBio’s communications and marketing committee and currently serves Advamed’s host and welcome committee for the 2013 conference.


Reid Leonard, Managing Director, Merck Research Ventures Fund at Merck

Dr. Reid Leonard is Executive Director, Licensing and Managing Director of the Merck Research Ventures Fund. The Merck Research Venture Fund (MRVF) is a strategic investment vehicle through which Merck will help to shape the diversity and quality of external innovation. MRVF will participate in both direct and fund-to-fund biotech investments. As Managing Director, Reid is responsible for the overall implementation and coordination of Merck’s investments through the Fund, working closely with colleagues from Merck Corporate Development, Finance, and External Scientific Affairs.

As Merck’s Boston-based licensing “scout”, Reid interacts regularly with biotechnology companies and academic institutions to identify and evaluate partnership opportunities that will enhance Merck’s pipeline.  A key component of this role is to maintain close contact with leading life science venture firms and other stakeholders in the New England innovation cluster.  Reid also supervises scientific scouting for Canada and Latin America.

Prior to his career in business development, Dr. Leonard conducted basic research and drug discovery on ion channels at Merck. Reid is a graduate of Brandeis University, with a dual BA in biology and psychology. He earned a PhD in biology (neuroscience) from Purdue University and completed postdoctoral training in molecular pharmacology at Caltech. Reid joined Merck Research Laboratories, Rahway NJ, in 1989 and spent ten years at the bench practicing drug discovery.  In 1998, Reid moved into the External Scientific Affairs group where he has contributed to the search, evaluation, and execution of numerous biotech and academic partnerships to advance Merck’s pipeline.

John Reilly, VP Business Development, Tetragenetics, Inc.

John is Tetragenetics’ V.P. of Business Development. Prior to joining Tetragenetics he co-founded Gendyne Therapeu­tics, an siRNA delivery and discovery company, and served as its CEO where he led successful fundraising and licensing deals. He joined Tetragenetics’ founders in 2004 to spearhead the business side of the enterprise, bringing more than seven years of experience launching early-stage ventures, identifying market opportunities and developing strategic partner relationships. He holds a BA degree from Hamilton College and MBA/MS degrees from Cornell University. Currently, he serves as one of the co-chairs of the MassBio Business Development and Finance Forum Working Group and as a mentor to entrepreneurs via their MassCONNECT program.


Ron Renaud, Jr, President & CEO, Idenix Pharmaceuticals

Ron has served as the President and chief executive officer of Idenix Pharmaceuticals, Inc. since October 2010. Prior to this, Mr. Renaud has served as the chief financial officer of Idenix Pharmaceuticals, Inc. since June 2007 and additionally as Chief Business Officer since June 2010. Mr. Renaud brings a unique mix of skills to this role with his finance experience at public biotechnology companies and on Wall Street, as well as his science background. Prior to joining Idenix, Mr. Renaud served as chief financial officer of Keryx Biopharmaceuticals. In this role he was responsible for the strategic planning and development of the finance function to support the company’s growth and its late-stage product candidate development. Prior to his position at Keryx, he spent several years as a senior biotechnology equity analyst for leading investment banks including Bear Stearns, Schwab SoundView and JP Morgan. Additional industry experience includes Mr. Renaud's more than five years at Amgen Inc., where he held positions in clinical research, investor relations and finance.

Mr. Renaud holds a Masters in Business Administration from the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California and a Bachelor of Arts from St. Anselm College in Manchester, NH.


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