SAN FRANCISCO, May 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Sofinnova Ventures, a venture capital firm investing in early-stage life science and information technology companies, today announced the addition of industry veteran Bill Ringo to its life science team. In his role as Executive-in-Residence, Bill will apply his experience to help start new pharmaceutical companies and guide existing companies and their management teams. The Executive-in-Residence program is one of the resources Sofinnova Ventures employs to steer start-ups to success. "Bill has had a long relationship with Sofinnova through his involvement with the companies we have invested in, and we are thrilled to have him join us on a formal basis," said Jim Healy, MD, Ph.D., and General Partner of Sofinnova Ventures. "Our portfolio companies and their management teams will reap the benefits of Bill's personal experience in launching products and building companies that feature outstanding product development, commercial, and operational expertise. Bill has a wealth of knowledge in working in both large pharmaceutical companies and biotechnology companies, and is a major asset to Sofinnova's team and our focus on financing spin outs." New Executive-in-Residence Appointment Bill Ringo has 35 years of experience in building compelling companies developing new therapeutics for the treatment of life threatening diseases. Bill is the former President and Chief Executive Officer of Abgenix, Inc., which sold for $2.7 billion to Amgen in April 2006. Abgenix focused on developing human antibodies as agents to treat severe diseases such as cancer. Vectibix, developed to treat colorectal cancer, was Abgenix's first product launched by Amgen in 2006. Bill also serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors at Intermune, a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing innovative therapies in pulmonology and hepatology. From June 2003 to September 2003, he also served as Intermune's interim President and CEO. Prior to these positions, Bill worked at Eli Lilly & Company and served in various capacities including: Product Group President, Oncology and Critical Care Products from June 1999 until his retirement in February 2001; President of Internal Medicine Products from January 1998 until June 1999; and President of Eli Lilly's Infectious Diseases Business Unit from September 1995 until January 1998. Bill is a member of the Board of Directors of Inspire Pharmaceuticals, Allos Therapeutics, and Portola Pharmaceuticals. He holds a B.S. and an M.B.A. from the University of Dayton. About Sofinnova Ventures Founded in 1974, Sofinnova Ventures is a leading venture capital firm specializing in spin offs and emphasizing a diversified investment strategy through the financing of early stage companies in the life science and information technology sectors. Sofinnova's mission is to create value by providing entrepreneurs with the resources, experience and networks necessary to turn their ideas into profitable businesses. For more information, visit www.sofinnova.com.
SOURCE Sofinnova Ventures