Drugmaker Galapagos names former J&J exec Paul Stoffels as CEO

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FILE PHOTO: Stoffels, Chief Scientific Officer of Johnson & Johnson attends the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos

– Belgian drugmaker Galapagos NV on Wednesday named former Johnson & Johnson senior executive Paul Stoffels as its chief executive officer, effective April 1.

Stoffels was the chief scientific officer of Johnson & Johnson since 2012 and spearheaded the development of its single-shot COVID-19 vaccine which won U.S. regulatory authorization in February last year.

He retired from J&J at the end of 2021 and will replace current Galapagos top boss and co-founder Onno van de Stolpe after the latter’s planned retirement.

Stoffels also served on the Galapagos board of directors from its foundation in 1999 until 2002.

“Given his extraordinary R&D as well as managerial experience, extensive network, along with his deep understanding of Galapagos’ strengths and potential, we are convinced that Paul is uniquely qualified to lead Galapagos,” Raj Parekh, chairman of Galapagos, said in a statement.

Galapagos develops treatments for inflammatory diseases and kidney ailments.

It has a drug, filgotinib, which has been approved in the European Union and some other markets to treat rheumatoid arthritis. The company collaborated with Gilead Sciences on the drug’s development.

(Reporting by Amruta Khandekar; Editing by Devika Syamnath)