Given the fact that pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies are involved in the production of life-saving drugs, one may think that they have it easy. However, that could not be any further from the truth. While pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies do in fact receive support from various corners, their products are held to a higher standard seeing as they are supposed to save lives. Therefore, in addition to being faced with the normal market challenges, such as competition, that face every industry, biotechnology companies also have to deal with a stringent regulatory environment. As such, it is quite rare for new pharmaceutical companies to experience consistent exponential growth. That, however, has been the case with Seattle Genetics. Since its formation close to two decades ago, the company has made significant inroads in the cancer research field, brought a few products to market and today has a healthy market value of close to $10 billion.
The brains that have engineered this exponential growth belong to Clay Siegall. The co-founder, President, and Chief Executive Officer recently sat down with Seattle Business Magazine to discuss his motivations for joining the biotech industry and his general outlook on its future. The company solely has an oncological focus with most of the drugs being researched and developed being antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs). The first ADC drug product brought to market, Adcetris, is used to treat Hodgkin lymphoma, a type of cancer that affects the lymph system. Given the significant growth experienced in the last 18 years, the company’s investors share the same ambition of becoming a dominant player in the industry in the coming years. As a sign of the company’s unwavering commitment to growth, it is already in the process of developing 11 other drugs. Mr. Clay Siegall believes that at least four of these drugs have the potential to save millions of lives and bring in immediate returns at the same time.
Unsurprisingly, Mr. Siegall has an academic background that is commensurate with his very successful professional background. He holds a Bachelor of Science, in Zoology, degree from the University of Maryland and also recently earned a Doctor of Philosophy, in Genetics, degree from the George Washington University.
Clay Siegall’s talents have not gone unseen by other companies in the pharmaceutical industry. In the hope of receiving some of his strategic abilities, some companies have invited him to serve on their boards. Today, Mr. Siegall serves as a director on the boards of Alder Biopharmaceuticals Inc., Mirna Therapeutics, Inc. and Ultragenyx Pharmaceuticals.