Cambridge Healthtech Institute’s 16th Annual

Strategic Alliance Management Congress

Advancing Pharmaceuticals Through Collaborations & Partnerships

May 13-15, 2019

The development and successful approval of new drugs and therapies increasingly relies on the strategic partnerships forged across pharma, biotech, academia, and beyond, along various points in the pipeline. In order for these partnerships to be successful and mutually beneficial, partners on both sides must manage the process and people efficiently and effectively. The quantity, scope, and complexity of these alliances has ushered in new strategies, innovative approaches, and best practices to maximize value and to leverage partnerships above and beyond the deal.

Cambridge Healthtech Institute’s 16th Annual Strategic Alliance Management Congress will bring together senior alliance management, business development, project management, technology transfer, and licensing professionals to network and share experiences, best practices, tools, insights, and perspectives in the art of alliance management.

Final Agenda



8:30 am Workshop Registration and Morning Coffee

9:00 am - 12:00 pm Pre-Conference Workshop*

Monday, May 13 9:00 am - 12:00 pm

The Alliance Manager as Interventionist

Adam Kornetsky, Senior Consultant, Vantage Partners

Mai-Tal Kennedy, Senior Consultant, Vantage Partners

A key aspect of the Alliance Management role is that of “interventionist” – Alliance Managers need to spot and then intervene in challenging moments, including conflicts, re-negotiations, interpersonal dislocations, team dysfunction, and the like. That said, most Alliance Mangers do not have any formal training on this aspect of the role or indeed have any frameworks or tools for their use. This both lowers their effectiveness and indeed can undermine the recognition of the Alliance Management organization and its role and value. In this interactive, experiential session Vantage will share and the participants will have the opportunity to discuss and consider just such a set of frameworks and tools, in this way both elevating their ability to play their role and enhancing their clarity and purposefulness in designing effective and ultimately value creating interventions.

*Separate registration required.

12:00 pm Conference Registration


1:05 pm Welcome by Conference Organizer

Kaitlin Kelleher, Conference Producer, Cambridge Healthtech Institute

1:10 Chairperson’s Opening Remarks

Dana Hughes, Vice President & Global Head, Integration and Alliance Management, Worldwide Business Development Group, Pfizer

1:15 Building an Alliance Management Community: Pfizer’s Story

Hughes_J-DanaDana Hughes, Vice President & Global Head, Integration and Alliance Management, Worldwide Business Development Group, Pfizer

Alliances involve so much more than just those with the title of alliance manager – numerous departments and colleagues get involved, and it’s not always clear how to set up partnership capabilities, keep abreast of changes, and develop good working relationships. In this talk, we will discuss how the alliance management community has been set up at Pfizer, what has worked so far, and challenges ahead.

1:45 Is Your Alliance Out of Alignment?

Kennedy_MichaelMichael Kennedy, PhD, MBA, Director, Alliance Management, Business Development & Licensing, Bayer Healthcare

This presentation will detail why alignment is critical to alliance success. Moreover, it will demonstrate through real-world examples how alliance managers can build alignment in a way that maximizes the chance of attaining desired business outcomes in their collaborative ventures. Methodologies will be described that, when applied, will help mitigate misalignment within an organization and between that organization and its alliance partner.

2:15 The Role and Importance of Alliance Management as your company Transforms to an External Innovation Model

Lebel_MikeMichael Lebel, AM/CAM, Vice President, Strategic Alliance Management, Alliance Management & Business Development, Ipsen

As many companies focus on an external innovation model, Alliance Management plays a critical role in helping organizations achieve long-term business success. One important aspect of the Alliance duties is the ability to build internal knowledge of its value to an externally facing organization. How do we educate our internal stakeholders as to the role and value of Alliance Management as well as training them on the ability to navigate and often actively leverage significant differences between partner’s strength, culture and operating models.


2:45 Own Your Transformation: Creating a Collaborative Leadership System for the Partnering Everywhere World

Twombly_JanJan Twombly, CSAP, President, The Rhythm of Business

The speed of business, science, and technology demands collaboration like never before. It is rewiring organizations and redefining what it means to be a leader. Alliance professionals — the tip of the spear of collaborative leadership—are orchestrating the partnering ecosystem, evolving organization culture, and delivering the experience partners seek. Use this five-point transformation agenda to guide creating the systems, incentives, structures, accountabilities, and essential mindset, skillset, toolset to realize the value of the partnering-everywhere world.

3:15 Refreshment Break with Exhibit Viewing

3:55 Chairperson’s Remarks

Michael Kennedy, PhD, MBA, Director, Alliance Management, Business Development & Licensing, Bayer Healthcare

4:00 KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: ACE (Alliance Center of Excellence) in the Hole, Maybe?

Anna Maroney, PhD, Vice President & Head, Alliance Management, AbbVie, Inc.

AbbVie has developed an Alliance Center of Excellence (ACE) where everyone who works with alliance partners can leverage existing tools and training, share best practices, identify and resolve systemic alliance management needs or challenges, and establish cross-functional connections to offer a consistent approach to partnering. Discussion will include how AbbVie created the ACE to fit the needs of the organization and reflections on the impact the community has delivered to our partnerships and the AbbVie organization.

4:30 PANEL DISCUSSION: M&A Integration: A New Role in Alliance Management

McCarthy_MaryAnneModerator: MaryAnne McCarthy, Senior Director, Alliance Management, Genmab, Inc.

Panelists: Harvey_BrentBrent Harvey, Director, Alliance Management, Eli Lilly

Twait_SteveSteven Twait, Vice President Alliance & Integration Management, AstraZeneca

Mergers & acquisitions are a key part of any large pharma company. While they are different from a traditional alliance, alliance managers can play a key role in this process. This panel discussion will discuss the skills alliance managers bring to the table, how M&A can be integrated into the alliance department’s scope of responsibilities, and the benefits and challenges unique to M&A.

5:00 Sponsored Presentation (Opportunity Available)

vantage_logo5:30 Welcome Reception with Exhibit Viewing

6:45 Close of Day



8:00 am Morning Coffee


8:25 Chairperson’s Remarks

Anna Maroney, PhD, Vice President & Head, Alliance Management, AbbVie, Inc.

8:30 CO-PRESENTATION: Building a Long Term Academic-Industry Partnership

Ralph_MarkMark Ralph, Executive Director & Global Head, Contracts & Alliance Management, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Erik Lium, Executive Vice President, Mount Sinai Innovation Partners

Together we will present on the evolving relationship between Boehringer Ingelheim and Mount Sinai, with a focus on strategic benefits and associated challenges.

9:00 CO-PRESENTATION: The Evolution of an Alliance in Changing times

Struttmann_Mary JoMary Jo Struttmann, Executive Director, Alliance Management, Astellas

Baselice_JudithJudy Baselice, Director, Alliance Management, Worldwide Business Development, Pfizer

As Alliance Managers, we are responsible for ensuring an alliance delivers value through its lifecycle even if the alliance goes through a major chance in the midst of its lifecycle. This case study will highlight how two seasoned alliance professionals took control of the collaborative work of the alliance, ensuring the alliance continued to deliver and follow its “North Star.”

9:30 CO-PRESENTATION: Successfully Delivering on Each Aspect of the "Magic Triangle" in a Dual Contract Research Organization Alliance – Quality, Speed and Value

Carnan_ElspethElspeth Carnan, Vice President Supplier Performance Management, Global Clinical Operations, EMD Serono

Butterworth_RichardRichard Butterworth, Senior Director, Alliance Management, Global Clinical Operations, Merck KGaA

Quality is the essential component of clinical development, but can often be compromised by demands of cost-reduction and increased speed. How then can these factors be optimized for the Pharmaceutical Sponsor in a dual CRO alliance? This presentation will highlight the principles of a Pay for Performance alliance model that incentivizes top-quartile industry-benchmarked performance, while delivering the mandated level of quality for clinical product development and ensuring that value generation is incentivized as a core component for innovation, improvement and measurable efficiency gains.

10:00 Coffee Break with Exhibit Viewing


10:45 CO-PRESENTATION: Why Is a Spin-Off a Win-Win? Lessons Learned from Planning for Success

Bendt_AidaAida Bendt, Head, Alliance Management, MedImmune

Leggett-Wells_YaminahYaminah Leggett-Wells, Senior Director, Project Management, Viela Bio

When a large pharma company decides to spin off some of its assets into a standalone company, what does that transition look like? How is the alliance management team involved? This case study will take a look at how AstraZeneca/MedImmune successfully spun off Viela Bio, strategies that worked, and unique challenges they faced.

11:30 KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: The Changing BioPharma Partnering Landscape: Implication for Alliance Management

Kliman_StuartStuart Kliman, Partner, Vantage Partners

Siddal_BenBen Siddall, Partner, Vantage Partners

The life sciences partnering landscape is rapidly changing, leading to markedly different types of alliances and relationships across the value chain and drug development lifecycle. These show up in a multitude arena and are all appropriately tagged with different names – “beyond the pill” partnerships, digital trial alliances, external innovation, real world evidence, and the like. In this discussion Vantage will share latest thinking about how the landscape is indeed evolving and the implications of that on partner choice making, partnership business models and, of course, on the focus and necessary new capabilities of alliance management organizations.

12:15 pm Luncheon Presentation (Sponsorship Opportunity Available) or Enjoy Lunch on Your Own

12:45 Session Break


1:25 Chairperson’s Remarks


Thomas Krucker, PhD, Director, Alliance Management and Partnering, Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research (NIBR)

1:30 Industry Alliances with Advocacy: A Catalyst for Drug Development & Alliance Managers

Aselage_Beth-lowresBeth Aselage, Senior Patient Advocacy & Alliance Development Specialist, Retrophin

Patients as partners is an pioneering concept across the healthcare industry. Alliances between industry and advocacy organizations are gaining momentum and opening new opportunities to maximize resources to support early-stage development efforts. Highlights from the second year of a case study following a research partnership between Retrophin, the National Institutes of Health, and advocacy organization,, will explore how the value of bridging alliances with advocacy partners can catalyze successful drug development efforts.


2:00 CO-PRESENTATION: Learnings from an International, Multifaceted, Pharmaceutical/Platform/Technology Alliance

Wilson_DougDoug Wilson, PharmD, Director, Alliance Management, Business Development, GSK

Gerstmayer_DougBernhard Gerstmayer, PhD, Director, Program and Alliance Management, Business Development, Miltenyi Biotec

Alliance managers from Miltenyi Biotec and GlaxoSmithKline will discuss and review their experiences in managing a highly complex and multifaceted alliance. This alliance actually involves 4 separate but interconnected agreements that are managed under an umbrella strategic alliance agreement, across 3 countries and multiple stakeholders. The alliance managers will share their successes and challenges encountered along the way.

2:30 PANEL DISCUSSION: Changing the Innovation Ecosystem: Alliance Management in the Celgene Research Consortium

Moderator: Dicker_JoyJoy Dicker, Director, Alliance Management, Mount Sinai Innovation Partners

Evans_SeanSean L. Evans, PhD, Associate Director, Business Development & Corporate Partnerships, Johns Hopkins Technology Ventures

Hall_AndrewAndrew Hall, Executive Director, Global Alliances & Business Development, Celgene

Morin_PatPat J. Morin, PhD, Executive Director, Strategic Alliances, Abramson Cancer Center, University of Pennsylvania

Smyth_EmerEmer Smyth, PhD, Director, Cancer Research Alliances, Assistant Dean for Cancer Research, Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, Columbia University

In 2016, four major academic institutions and Celgene formed a landmark partnership to accelerate the discovery and development of novel cancer therapeutics and diagnostics for the benefit of patients. This session will highlight the tools and processes that have been developed to manage this complex collaboration between industry and academia.

3:30 Refreshment Break with Exhibit Viewing

4:00 Interactive Breakout Discussion Groups

Table 1: Alliance Management at the Forefront of Deal-Making

Moderators: Sean L. Evans, PhD, Associate Director, Business Development & Corporate Partnerships, Johns Hopkins Technology Ventures

Brent Harvey, Director, Alliance Management, Eli Lilly

Anna Maroney, PhD, Vice President & Head, Alliance Management, AbbVie, Inc.

One of the principal roles of an alliance manager is to manage the collaboration based on an agreed-upon contract. Ahead of the contract signing, during the negotiation process, alliance managers are in a unique position to provide input based on the management of past deals. This group will explore ways in which Alliance Management can get involved earlier in the deal-making process, transferring the knowledge and experience of managing other partnerships.

  • At what point should Alliance Management get involved in the deal-making process?
  • What contributions can an alliance manager make to the negotiation process?
  • How would a partner perceive Alliance Management at the table? What message would that deliver about your company's approach to partnership?
  • What steps are required to gain alignment in your own organization about the role of Alliance Management in the deal-making process?

Table 2: Alliance Launch

Moderators: Joy Dicker, Director, Alliance Management, Mount Sinai Innovation Partners

Julia Gershkovich, Head, North America R&D Alliance Management, Sanofi Group

Dana Hughes, Vice President & Global Head, Integration and Alliance Management, Worldwide Business Development Group, Pfizer

Pat J. Morin, PhD, Executive Director, Strategic Alliances, Abramson Cancer Center, University of Pennsylvania

Organizations commit significant resources to alliance deals that are central components of the organization’s long-term strategy. Too often, however, such deals get “thrown over the fence” from those who identify the asset, to those responsible for negotiating and closing the deal, to those finally responsible for managing the working relationship with the partner organization. This group will explore some of the challenges and some best practices for launching an alliance for success.

  • How, if at all, does your organization employ a systematic approach to launch alliances?
  • What are the initial challenges, necessities and opportunities during an alliance launch?

Table 3: Alliance Management & Project Management – Managing the Divide

Moderators: Timothy Salfi, Director, Corporate Alliance Management, Merck

Tim Hammonds, PhD, Deputy Director Drug Discovery, Therapeutic Discovery Labs, Cancer Research UK

Aida Bendt, Head, Alliance Management, MedImmune

Alliance Management (AM) and Project/Program Management (PM) can be similar enough that many companies struggle to manage the divide between the functions, or debate if the two functions need to be separate. This roundtable will tackle the issues of whether alliance management and project management should be treated separately or as a combined function, including the following topics:

  • Benefits of separate functions versus single function
  • Assigning roles and responsibilities
  • Ensuring responsibilities of both functions are managed adequately

Table 4: Introducing Alliance Management to a Growing Biotech Company

Moderators: Michael Lebel, AM/CAM, Vice President, Strategic Alliance Management, Alliance Management & Business Development, Ipsen

Thomas Krucker, PhD, Director, Alliance Management and Partnering, Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research (NIBR)

A larger percentage of alliance deals in the life sciences space involve a Big Pharma – Biotech partnership. This group will discuss the key aspects to consider before introducing alliance management to biotech companies.

  • What types of alliances should innovative enterprises form?
  • Which alliance management skills and tools do companies need to possess?
  • How can organizations develop a culture of open innovation?
  • What are the ways to create value and share it among stakeholders involved?
  • How do you get CEO & senior management engagement?
  • What questions should senior management ask as they implement policies, processes, and SOPs that will apply to (and possibly conflict with) partners?

Table 5: A Review of Best Practices for Collaborations between Pharmaceutical Companies and Companion Diagnostic Providers

At some point, most pharmaceutical companies look for a diagnostic partner. This group will discuss issues surrounding selecting a partner and avoiding challenges in managing these types of partnerships.

  • What factors do you consider in selection of a companion diagnostics partner?
  • What are the key milestones and associated decision points moving forward in diagnostic development?
  • How long does it take to complete an agreement with a CoDx partner?
  • Is it a fee for service, pay as you go or broader alliance?

5:00 Breakout Discussion Report Out

5:30 Close of Day



8:00 am Morning Coffee


8:25 Chairperson’s Remarks

Tim Hammonds, PhD, Deputy Director Drug Discovery, Therapeutic Discovery Labs, Cancer Research UK

8:30 Translating Oncology in the Valley of Death - Academics, Industry and Alliance Management

Hammonds_TimTim Hammonds, PhD, Deputy Director Drug Discovery, Therapeutic Discovery Labs, Cancer Research UK

CRUK-TDL is a 90 FTE biotech that leverages unique access to academia and industry to build and run themed drug discovery alliances. These involve select dream teams of up to 6 academics linked to Pharma to generate project portfolios around a specific oncology area. We will describe with examples the skills we have acquired to keep such multi-party industry-academia alliances afloat and on track.

9:00 CO-PRESENTATION: 18 Months into a Strategic Oncology Alliance

Bell_JohnathonJonathon Bell, Director, Alliance and Integration Management, AstraZeneca

Salfi_TimothyTimothy Salfi, Director, Corporate Alliance Management, Merck

AstraZeneca and Merck established one of the largest and most complex alliances in the field of oncology, deploying a short 18 months ago. This copresentation will discuss the initial launch, its startup strategies, and where it stands now.

9:30 Sponsored Presentation (Opportunity Available)

10:00 Coffee Break with Exhibit Viewing


10:30 Alliance Management in Deal Making and Potential Outcomes

Gershkovich_JuliaJulia Gershkovich, Head, North America R&D Alliance Management, Sanofi Group

Effective management of an alliance supports its success, but some deal terms can add challenges to its management. This talk will discuss: How alliance management is or should be involved in deal making. What issues we face as alliance managers and what we can do to improve outcomes. Participate in sharing some best practices and lessons learned from the group.

11:00 Can We Still Be Friends? Relationships Are Messy, But It’s Easier to Terminate a Healthy One!

Salvatore_ChristopherChristopher Salvatore, Director, Strategic Alliances, Global Project & Alliance Management, Merck

Even highly effective and successful collaborations encounter unforeseen challenges which need to be managed.  In this talk we will discuss the value of being open about the impact of termination early in the relationship and lessons learned from challenging situations.

11:30 Unwinding Terminated R&D Alliances: Challenges, Lessons Learned, and Opportunities for Improvement

Pessagno_SteveSteven Pessagno, Alliance Director & Head of CoE Operations, Alliance Management Worldwide Bus Dev, GlaxoSmithKline

This talk will present challenges and lessons learned in an alliance termination. Discuss the process of termination, who is in charge of what, and how to finalize the termination with all parties satisfied.

12:00 pm Close of Day


prelim agenda


For details on the US and Europe agenda, please contact:

Kaitlin Kelleher
Conference Producer
+1 781.972.5498