– USA, MA – Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq:KERX), a biopharmaceutical company focused on bringing innovative therapies to market for people with renal disease, today announced that John P. Butler has been appointed as a new independent director to its board of directors pursuant to the company’s financing transaction with The Baupost Group, L.L.C., effective immediately. Mr. Butler is an industry veteran with significant experience in guiding corporate strategy.
“I am pleased to welcome John to our Board, as he brings extensive strategic knowledge derived from his successful career at Genzyme as president of its renal business,” said Michael Tarnok, chairman of Keryx’s board of directors. “John’s long track record of success commercializing medicines for patients with kidney disease and his global view will certainly prove valuable as we advance the Auryxia™ franchise and build a leading renal business.”
“I believe that there is a significant need for innovative therapies that improve the lives of people with kidney disease,” said Mr. Butler. “I believe Auryxia has that potential, and I am excited to work with Keryx’s management team and board to realize this vision and create value for our shareholders.”
Mr. Butler has more than 25 years of biotech and pharmaceutical industry experience. He has served as the president and chief executive officer of Akebia Therapeutics, Inc. since September 2013. From October 2011 to April 2013, Mr. Butler was the chief executive officer of Inspiration Biopharmaceuticals where he led the successful sale of the company’s assets for a total aggregate consideration that could exceed $1 billion. Prior to Inspiration, Mr. Butler held various positions at Genzyme Corporation, now Sanofi, from 1997 to July 2011, including president of the company’s rare genetic disease business. Notably, he also served as president, general manager of Genzyme’s Renal Division, which grew from $150 million to more than $1 billion in revenue under his leadership. Prior to Genzyme, Mr. Butler held various positions of increasing responsibility at Amgen Inc. John is an active member of the renal community and has served on several non-profit boards, including chairman of the board of trustees for the American Kidney Fund. Mr. Butler received a B.A. in Chemistry from Manhattan College and an M.B.A. from Baruch College.
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