Management Team

Kiadis Pharma has a seasoned senior leadership team consisting of highly experienced industry professionals with complementary skill sets. The team has an established track record in pursuing drug discovery and development as well as deal-making objectives, both in smaller biotechnology companies and in large pharmaceutical companies.

Dirk De Naeyer

Head of Kiadis

Dirk De Naeyer joined Kiadis Pharma in 2018 and is Chief Operations Officer. Mr. De Naeyer brings nearly 20 years of experience leading operations in both clinical and commercial-stage biotechnology companies. Prior to joining Kiadis Pharma, he was at Janssen Pharmaceuticals where he spent 14 years in various leadership positions. Most recently, Mr. De Naeyer was co-lead for the integration of Actelion into Janssen. Prior to that, he was the head of the Janssen Global Clinical Operations team and held multiple supply chain and operations leadership positions. This included heading up the Janssen Clinical Supply Chain, overseeing all active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) and Drug Product manufacturing, Packaging and Distribution for Janssen R&D, which covered Small Molecules, Biologics and Stem Cell therapies. Mr. De Naeyer joined Janssen after five years at McKinsey & Company. He holds a degree in Engineering from the KU Leuven, Belgium, and a MBA from the University of Chicago. Mr. De Naeyer is a Belgian citizen.

Robert Friesen

Chief Scientific Officer

Robert Friesen, PhD, joined Kiadis Pharma in 2019 and is Chief Scientific Officer. Dr. Friesen has more than 20 years of experience in the biopharmaceutical industry leading multiple Research and Development organizations. Dr. Friesen joined Kiadis Pharma from Ablynx where he was CSO until its acquisition by Sanofi. Prior to Sanofi, he served as senior vice president of ProQR Therapeutics, a clinical stage biotechnology company, heading the science and early development division. Prior to joining ProQR Therapeutics, Dr. Friesen worked at Janssen BioTherapeutics, a Johnson & Johnson Company, as global head of biologics research, and at the Crucell Vaccine Institute, a Johnson & Johnson Company, as vice president preclinical and clinical research. Before Crucell Vaccine Institute, he was head of preclinical & early clinical development at MorphoSys.

Margot Hoppe

General Counsel & Corporate Secretary

Margot Hoppe was our General Counsel & Corporate Secretary from 2008 through 2018. On June 1, 2020, Ms. Hoppe rejoined us as an employee, again in the position of our General Counsel & Corporate Secretary. She has over 20 years of experience in corporate legal affairs and worked for various biotechnology companies including Gist-Brocades and Koninklijke DSM N.V. Ms. Hoppe holds a Master’s degrees in law and political science from the Erasmus University of Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

Martine Nolan

Senior Vice President, Quality

Martine Nolan joined Kiadis Pharma in 2019 and is Senior Vice President, Quality. Ms. Nolan brings over 20 years of experience in commercial quality and manufacturing in the pharmaceutical sector. She joined Kiadis Pharma from Amgen where she served as regional head of quality operations at the Dublin, Ireland and Breda, Netherlands sites. Prior to that Ms. Nolan served as executive director for international quality, Turkey, Middle East & Africa. Before joining Amgen, Ms. Nolan held several positions of increasing responsibility in quality operations at Schering-Plough (Merck) in Ireland, Singapore and US. Ms. Nolan holds a MSc in Cellular Physiology from University College Cork and a BSc in Biochemistry from University College Dublin.

Andrew Sandler

Chief Medical Officer

Andrew Sandler joined Kiadis Pharma in 2017 and is Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Sandler has over 20 years of experience within the healthcare industry dedicated to hematologic malignancies and solid tumors. Prior to joining Kiadis Pharma, he was senior vice president, medical affairs, at Medivation (now part of Pfizer). Prior to that he was CMO at Dendreon Pharmaceuticals and Spectrum Pharma. He has also held senior-level positions with several leading biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, including Bayer Healthcare, Berlex and Seattle Genetics. Dr. Sandler obtained his MD from Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York and completed a fellowship in medical oncology at University of California San Francisco. A US citizen, Dr. Sandler is a board certified medical oncologist and has treated many patients with hematologic malignancies, including bone marrow transplant patients.

Govert Schouten

Head of Innovation

Govert Schouten joined Kiadis in 2020 and is Head of Innovation. Dr. Schouten brings nearly 25 years of experience in developing and implementing strategies to build businesses and create value. Prior to joining Kiadis, Dr. Schouten was the founder of Idmon Consulting B.V., a consulting firm providing corporate development, strategy and business development services to the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry. Previously, Dr. Schouten was co-founder and chief business officer of myTomorrows (Impatients N.V.), chief executive officer of Mucosis B.V., and vice president, head of business development and member of the executive committee of Crucell Vaccines. Dr. Schouten holds a Master’s degree in biomedical sciences and a PhD in tumor virology from Leiden University, the Netherlands.

Marion Zerlin

Managing Director of CMC Global Project Management

Dr. Marion Zerlin was born in 1964 in Germany. She graduated from the University of Mainz with a Master in Biology and from the University of Göttingen with a Ph.D. in Chemistry. During her 25 years academic and professional career, she has worked as a post-doc in the Institute of Natural Product Research and the Max-Planck Institute in Jena., before taking a lab head position at Sanofi (Aventis), Germany with increasing responsibilities in early drug discovery as a department head. In her role as a Portfolio head for Biologics in CMC Project Management, she had played a key role in bringing projects into clinical development, POC and submissions. After taking a Chief-of-staff position to the R&D president at Sanofi, Dr. Zerlin is now Head of global CMC project management with responsibilities for CMC Leadership, Supply & Demand CMC Management and CMC Dossier management, reporting to Dr. Kripa Ram, Head of CMC Development.

Dirk De Naeyer

Head of Kiadis

Robert Friesen

Chief Scientific Officer

Margot Hoppe

General Counsel & Corporate Secretary

Martine Nolan

Senior Vice President, Quality

Andrew Sandler

Chief Medical Officer

Govert Schouten

Head of Innovation

Marion Zerlin

Managing Director of CMC Global Project Management