Big Picture – A Deep Dive Examination of Summit Therapeutics PLC
Summit Therapeutics PLC Snapshot
Innovation drives success in medicine. In the field of antibiotics research, no new classes of antibiotics have been approved in 15 years. With our promising pipeline and the ability of our Discuva Platform to develop future new mechanism antibiotics, we aim to change that.
Our proprietary Discuva Platform is designed to uncover novel bacterial targets and develops new mechanism antibiotics against them. To date, the Discuva Platform has developed two new targets for gonorrhoea, an ESKAPE programme and undisclosed programmes with Roche.
In addition, ridinilazole, our Phase 3-ready new mechanism antibiotic for C. difficile infection (‘CDI’), is being supported by an award worth up to $62 million from BARDA.
We think about antibiotics differently. We design our new mechanism antibiotics to be specific for the pathogen or infection. We believe this allows us to develop antibiotics capable of meeting the unmet needs of patients and healthcare providers, show clear advantages over current therapies and create value for payors and healthcare systems. We aim to develop antibiotics for high-volume use, not to be held in reserve. Our targeted approach supports antibiotic stewardship, improved outcomes for patients and healthcare savings.
We believe our strategy creates new opportunities that are untapped in the antibiotics space. We have the potential to develop antibiotics that beat out the current standards of care and ultimately achieve commercial success. We plan to execute this strategy by becoming a fully integrated, global biopharmaceutical company. Our experienced team of scientists, clinical and regulatory developers and executives spans the drug development spectrum, from research through commercialisation.
Summit was founded in 2003 and our shares are listed on the Nasdaq Global Market (symbol ‘SMMT’) and the AIM Market of the London Stock Exchange (symbol ‘SUMM’). We are headquartered in Oxfordshire, UK, and have offices in Cambridge, Massachusetts, US, and Cambridge, UK.
The world is entering an era of untreatable infections. There is overuse of existing antibiotics, and the last new mechanism antibiotic to be approved by the US FDA was in 2003. Without urgent action, once easily curable infections could become global health crises.
We believe that new mechanism antibiotics are the solution to combating today’s bacterial threats. With new mechanism antibiotics in development for C. difficile infection (‘CDI’), gonorrhoea and our Discuva platform to expand our pipeline, we believe we are a leader in antibiotic innovation.
At the core of our strategy, we are using new science and a new philosophy to create new opportunities in infectious diseases.
To execute this strategy, we are developing new mechanism antibiotics:
. Designed to be specific to a pathogen or infection.
. Aimed at meeting the unmet needs of patients and healthcare providers.
. Developed to be commercially attractive with compelling value for payors and healthcare systems.
Our goal is to achieve commercial success by replacing the current standards of care.
Our focus is on developing new mechanism antibiotics for bacteria listed as urgent or serious threats by the US Centers for Disease Control or the World Health Organization.
Learn More about how our Phase 3-ready precision antibiotic, ridinilazole, exemplifies our strategy.
Frank Armstrong, FRCPE, FFPM, Non-Executive Chairman
Dr Armstrong has served as a member of our board of directors since November 2012 and Non-Executive Chairman since June 2013. Dr Armstrong is currently President of Dr Frank M Armstrong Consulting Limited, a position he has held since 2012. Prior to this, Dr Armstrong led Medical Science and Innovation at Merck Serono, the biopharmaceutical division of Merck KGaA, from 2010 to 2011. He was also Head of Worldwide Product Development at Bayer AG from 1998 to 2001 and held various positions at ICI plc and Zeneca plc, now AstraZeneca plc, from 1985 to 1998. Dr Armstrong has served as the Chief Executive Officer at five biotechnology companies, including Fulcrum Pharma plc, which is listed on AIM, CuraGen Corporation, a Nasdaq-listed company that was acquired by Celldex Therapeutics, Inc., Bioaccelerate Holdings Inc., Provensis Ltd. and Phoqus Pharmaceuticals plc.
He is the Non-Executive Chairman of Faron Pharmaceuticals Oy and Caldan Therapeutics Ltd; a Non-Executive Director of Mereo Biopharma Group plc; and a Member of the Strategic Advisory Board of HealthCare Royalty Partners and Epidarex Capital. Dr Armstrong served as Non-Executive Director of Juniper Pharmaceuticals Inc. from 2013 to 2017. Dr Armstrong received an honors degree in biochemistry and an MBChB(MD) in medicine from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh and a Fellow of the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Physicians.
Glyn Edwards, MBE, Chief Executive Officer
Mr Edwards has served as Summit’s Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors since April 2012. Prior to joining the Company, Mr Edwards served as interim Chief Executive Officer of the BioIndustry Association, a UK trade organisation, from November 2011 to June 2012, and Chief Executive Officer at Antisoma plc, a biotechnology company specialising in the development of novel drugs for the treatment of cancer, from 1998 to 2011.
Mr Edwards also previously served as Vice President of Business Development at Therapeutic Antibodies Ltd. Mr Edwards received a BSc in biochemistry from Bristol University and a MSc in economics from the London Business School.
Leopoldo Zambeletti, Non-Executive Director
Mr Zambeletti has served as a member of our Board of Directors since May 2014. Mr Zambeletti has served as an independent strategic advisor to life sciences companies since 2013, focusing on mergers and acquisitions, out-licensing deals and financing strategy. Prior to this, Mr Zambeletti worked in investment banking for 19 years, during which time he led the European Healthcare Investment teams at JP Morgan and at Credit Suisse.
He is a Non-Executive Director of Nogra Pharma Ltd., Faron Pharmaceuticals Oy, DS Biopharma Ltd (formerly known as Dignity Services Ltd), Overjoy S.R.L and Tiziana Life Sciences plc and an advisor and co-founder to the US medtech company Qardio. Mr Zambeletti began his career as an accountant at KPMG. He received his degree in business administration from Bocconi University.
Valerie Andrews, Non-Executive Director
Ms Andrews has served as a member of the Board of Directors since September 2014. Most recently, Ms Andrews served from May 2011 until May 2014 as General Counsel at Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated, a biopharmaceutical company focussed on small molecule therapies for cystic fibrosis and other indications. From 2002 to May 2011, Ms Andrews served in various legal roles at Vertex, including as Deputy General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer.
Prior to joining Vertex, Ms Andrews was the Executive Director of Licensing for Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital from September 2001 to March 2002. From 1989 to 2001, Ms Andrews served as a corporate lawyer at Hill & Barlow PC, where she became a partner in 1997.
In her professional roles, Ms Andrews has garnered expertise in areas including corporate strategy, strategic transactions, corporate governance, executive compensation, risk management, and compliance. Ms Andrews served as a Non-Executive Director of Juniper Pharmaceuticals Inc. (formerly Columbia Laboratories) from 2005 until 2015. Ms Andrews received a BA in chemistry and psychology from Duke University and a JD from Boston College.
David Wurzer, Non-Executive Director
Mr Wurzer has served as a member of the Board of Directors since February 2015. Mr Wurzer is currently the Executive Vice President and Chief Investment Officer at Connecticut Innovations, a state-funded venture capital fund, where he previously served as Senior Managing Director and Managing Director. Prior to joining Connecticut Innovations in November 2009, Mr Wurzer served as Executive Vice President, Treasurer and Chief Financial Officer at CuraGen Corporation from 1997 to 2008.
He also held numerous positions at Value Health Inc. from 1991 to 1997, including Senior Vice President, Treasurer and Chief Financial Officer. Mr Wurzer is a Non-Executive Director of Standard Diversified Opportunities, Inc., Thetis Pharmaceutical LLC, My Gene Counsel LLC, Natural Polymer Devices Inc. and ReNetX Bio, Inc. (formerly known as Axerion Therapeutics, Inc.); from 2010 to 2012 he was a Non-Executive Director of DUSA Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and from 2010 to 2015 he was a Non-Executive Director of Response Genetics Inc.Mr Wurzer is a Certified Public Accountant and began his career with Coopers & Lybrand, which is now part of PricewaterhouseCoopers. He received a BBA from the University of Notre Dame.
Glyn Edwards, Chief Executive Officer
Mr Glyn Edwards was appointed to the Board of Directors as Chief Executive Officer in April 2012. Mr Edwards has a wealth of experience garnered from a thirty-year career in the life sciences industry, during which time he has held a number of senior executive and business development roles.
Prior to joining Summit, he was interim Chief Executive Officer of the UK trade body the BioIndustry Association (BIA) and Chief Executive Officer at Antisoma plc for 13 years, and Vice President of Business Development at Therapeutic Antibodies Ltd. Mr Edwards holds a BSc in biochemistry from Bristol University and an MSc in economics from the London Business School.
David Roblin, Chief Operating Officer, Chief Medical Officer and President of R&D
Dr David Roblin joined as our Chief Operating Officer and President of Research and Development in early 2017 and expanded his role to become Chief Medical Officer in May 2017. Dr Roblin has been acting as a research and development adviser to Summit since 2014.
Dr Roblin is an experienced scientist and physician, with a distinguished career in the pharmaceutical industry. He and his units have brought many medicines in several therapy areas through R&D to commercialisation, including in anti-infectives azithromycin, ciprofloxacin, moxifloxacin, voriconazole and maraviroc.
Dr Roblin has previously served as the Chief Operating Officer and Director of Scientific Translation at the Francis Crick Institute in London (2014 – 2017). Prior to this, he was Head of Research and Chief Medical Officer for Europe R&D at Pfizer Inc. from 2008 to 2011 and was Head of Therapy Area for Anti-infectives at Bayer AG from 1997 to 1999. He is also a non-executive director of Sosei PLC and sits on a variety of committees at Wellcome, on the UK Biomedical Catalyst Fund and the LEO Foundation prize committee.
Dr Roblin has a degree in biochemistry from University of London and qualified in Medicine from St George’s Hospital, London. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, Fellow of the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Medicine and a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences. He is an honorary Professor of Medicine at Swansea University and Professor of Translational Medicine at St George’s.
Daniel Elger, Chief Commercial Officer and SVP, R&D
Dr Elger joined our company in June of 2015. Previously, he served as the Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Development Officer of Genkyotex, Chief Financial Officer of e-Therapeutics plc and Vice President, Marketing and Communications of Antisoma. He earned his PhD in cancer biology from the University of Oxford and BA in medicine also from the University of Oxford.
Richard Vickers, Chief Scientific Officer and SVP, Antimicrobials
Dr Vickers joined our company in 2003 and has served as our Chief Scientific Officer, Antimicrobials, since October 2013. During his time at our company, Dr Vickers has worked in a variety of roles involved in the development and management of various antibacterial therapeutic programs, including our antibiotic program for the treatment of CDI.
Prior to joining our company, Dr Vickers undertook postdoctoral research studies with Professor Stephen Davies at the University of Oxford and held a Stipendiary Lectureship in organic chemistry at St. Catherine’s College in Oxford. Dr Vickers received a PhD in organic chemistry from the University of Reading and a BSc in chemistry from King’s College London.
Dave Powell, Head of Research and SVP
Dr Dave Powell joined Summit from GSK where he served as Director and Head of the Crick-GSK Biomedical LinkLabs, based at GSK’s UK R&D hub at Stevenage, UK, and The Francis Crick Institute in London.
Dr Powell held a number of positions of increasing seniority in his time at GSK. As part of his work there, he participated in antibiotic discovery, assay development, high throughput screening design and implementation, and lead optimisation support. In his most recent role at GSK, he led a collaboration with the Crick Institute, in addition to providing support to GSK’s ‘Discovery Partnerships with Academia’ team which collaborated with academic groups in downstream drug discovery. He was awarded a BSc and MSc from the National University of Ireland Galway, before completing a PhD in biochemistry at Cardiff University.
Summit had been notified of the following holdings of more than 3% or more of the issued share capital of the Company
Robert W. Duggan
Lansdowne Partners Limited
Information reviewed on 15 February 2019
Oxford Office (UK)
136a Eastern Avenue
Cambridge Office (UK)
Cambridge Office (US)
Phone: UK: +44 (0)1235 443 939 / US: +1 617 514 7149
Fax: +44 (0)1235 443 939
Nominated Adviser: Cairn Financial Advisers LLP
Address: Cheyne House, Crown Court, 62-63 Cheapside
Postcode EC2V 6AX
Country: United Kingdom
Phone: +44 (0)20 7213 0880
Joint Brokers: N+1 Singer
Address: One Bartholomew Lane
Postcode EC2N 2AX
Country: United Kingdom
Phone: +44 (0)20 7496 3000
Address: One New Change
Postcode EC4M 9AF
Country: United Kingdom
Phone: +44 (0)20 7886 2500
Financial PR (UK): Consilium Strategic Communications
Address: 41 Lothbury
Postcode EC2R 7HG
Phone: +44 (0)20 3709 5700
Registrars: Link Asset Services
Address: 34 Beckenham Road
Postcode BR3 4TU
Country: United Kingdom
Accountants and Auditors: PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP
Address: 3 Forbury Place, 23 Forbury Road
Postcode RG1 3JH
Country: United Kingdom