Haro Hartounian

Haro Hartounian

Summary

CEO / COO / President / General Manager 

Scientific and Business Executive with a record of achieving aggressive goals in large pharmaceutical, start-up biotechnology, and medical device companies by positioning capital, people, intellectual property, systems, and internal disciplines for successful long term growth.

Accomplished entrepreneur with business leadership experience and solid scientific background to drive products from bench to commercialization. Achieved aggressive product development goals by positioning capital, people, intellectual property, systems, corporate partnerships, and internal disciplines for successful long-term growth. Key player in development of two FDA approved products (DepoCyt and DepoMorphine) from bench to commercial launch. 

Areas of Leadership Expertise:

Visionary & Strategic Leadership

Aggressive Product Development

IPO & Shareholders Value

Debt Restructuring▪Team Building & Leadership

Company Image & Visibility

Seed and Future Fund Raising

Mergers & Acquisitions▪Business Development

Corporate Partners & JVs

Product Pipeline Development

Strategic Alliances / Equity Investors

Product Development Expertise:

Diabetes

Oncology

CNS Disorders

Wound Management

Medical Device

Cell Transplantation Therapy

Drug Delivery and Biopolymers

Value Offered

Mergers & Acquisitions: As President and CEO of Vyteris, Inc., orchestrated the merger and integration of MediSync BioServices Inc. in 2011, and secured Board approval to exit the transdermal drug delivery business, monetize assets, substantially reduce total liabilities, and raise $25MM in equity capital for the purpose of acquiring 4 contract research organizations (CROs). 

Seed and Future Fund Raising:  Led Microislet, Inc. from start-up to a successful public company, negotiating $25MM in startup equity financing and generating additional funds by taking company public, resulting in market cap increase of $80MM (average) in 24 months and shares traded on the American Stock Exchange. Secured an additional $2MM from NIH and $500K from Juvenile Diabetes Foundation. Founded Protagenic Therapeutics, Inc., securing $2MM in seed financing from influential and established investors who are well-known in the industry. Orchestrated $25MM in equity capital for Vyteris.

Business Development: At Vyteris, Inc., established business development strategies, forged partnerships, and led strategic alliance discussions with major biopharmaceutical companies in the transdermal drug delivery market. In-licensed technologies to strengthen product offerings. As CEO, Director and Founder of Protagenic Therapeutics, Inc., negotiated an exclusive licensing agreement with the University of Toronto for a revolutionary therapeutic technology.

Public/ Private Company and Wall Street Experience: Served on both private and public company Boards of Directors; gained tremendous Wall Street experience bringing companies public and negotiating equity deals with investment banking firms, private equity and venture capital firms, and private investors.

Career History

VYTERIS INC. (OTC/BB: VYTR), Fair Lawn, NJ                                                                             2008 to 2011

President and CEO

PROTAGENIC THERAPEUTICS INC,, San Diego, CA                                                               2006 to 2008

President and CEO, Director and Founder

MICROISLET, INC., San Diego, CA                                                                                                 2000 to 2006

President, COO and Co-Founder

MONSANTO, San Diego, CA                                                                                                           1998 to 2000

Director, Process Development

DEPOTECH CORPORATION, San Diego, CA                                                                              1994 to 1998

Associate Director – Process Development (1997 to 1998)

Manager – Process Development (1995 to 1997)

Senior Process Engineer (1994 to 1995) 

DUPONT CENTRAL RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT, Wilmington, DE                          1992 to 1994

Research Engineer

Work History

Work History
Jan 2008 - Aug 2011

President and CEO

Vyteris

Brought in as the first external executive leader in company history with both scientific and business background, to turn around, revitalize and refocus Vyteris and drive increased profitability and performance. Managed all crucial areas of R&D, operations, business development, strategic partnering, product development and commercialization, and public and investor relations. Established business development strategies, forged partnerships, and led strategic alliance discussions with major biopharmaceutical companies. Serve as a member of Board of Directors.

Impact: Led the company through a successful turnaround, infrastructure redesign, reorganization, merger, and business transformation, positioning the company for growth and success in the $22B contract research organization (CRO) industry.

Successfully orchestrated merger with MediSync BioServices Inc., transforming Vyteris into a diversified and profitable specialty contract research organization (CRO), while exiting from the company’s existing drug delivery business.

Proposed strategy and secured Board approval to raise $25M in equity capital for the purpose of acquiring four attractive CRO businesses in the areas of Dermatology, Pain Management and Regulatory Affairs. The long term investment opportunity over 3 years is estimated to generate $38.6MM in revenue and $8.6MM EBITDA, growing 10% annually.

Proposed strategy and secured Board approval to take the company private, monetize Vyteris’ extensive transdermal drug delivery assets, and reduce total liabilities from $19.6MM to $4.2MM.

Successfully advanced company’s ongoing joint venture in development of non-invasive infertility hormone with its corporate partner to phase 2 clinical trials.

Virtually transformed and renewed firm’s viability and momentum as a high-potential player in the transdermal drug delivery market. Brought renewed focus to corporate strategy by redefining and accelerating product development plan/cycle and in-licensing technologies to strengthen product offerings.

Initiated high-level operational and business development activities, infrastructure redesign, turnaround strategy, and reorganization. Cut headcount from 75 to 32, reengineered business processes, redesigned product development plan, and instilled urgency for financial discipline. Improved Sarbanes-Oxley compliant business process and reporting standards.

2006 - 2008

President and CEO

PROTAGENIC THERAPEUTICS INC

Won licensing agreement with University of Toronto to create a biotechnology company focused on developing treatment for central nervous systems disorders. Formulated company’s strategic direction, business plans, and financial projections and tactics. Successfully created valuation model and secured funding. Helped to formulate development strategy and demonstrate proof-of-concept. Served as a member of Board of Directors.

Impact: Founded company based on therapeutic technology for central nervous system disorders developed at the University of Toronto. Earned inventor’s and university officials’ respect; negotiated exclusive license agreement.

Secured financing from influential and established investors who are well-known in the industry.

Devised business plan and strategy by meeting with partners, consultants, and scientists for in-depth review and final approval. Raised sufficient funding to support company’s product development activities.

Assembled a world class board of directors and exemplary scientific advisory board.

Established business development and strategic alliances discussions with major biopharmaceutical companies.

2000 - 2006

President and COO

MicroIslet, Inc.

Directed start-up operations of biotechnology company. Developed business plan, provided strategic direction, raised funds, hired all personnel, forged corporate partnerships, and managed R&D activities. Provided visionary leadership and stabilized company by establishing overall goals, policies, processes, and identity. Served as a member of Board of Directors.

Impact: Established Microislet as a leader in the field of cell therapy for treatment of type 1 diabetes.

Funded successful operations by attaining $25+MM in equity financing. Raised capital by constructing a highly effective road show package and delivering persuasive presentations to investment bankers and individual investors.

Architected and developed corporate partnership between MicroIslet and Mayo foundation.

Sealed success by recruiting top-notch scientists whose expertise aligned with goals of company, and built strong board of directors and medical advisory board.

Generated additional funds by taking company public, resulting in market cap increase of $80MM (average) in 24 months and shares traded on the American Stock Exchange.

Secured $2MM from NIH and $500K from Juvenile Diabetes Foundation by building goodwill and demonstrating company’s value to the Foundation, investors, corporate interests, regulatory authorities, and the community.

1998 - 2000

Director, Process Development

Monsanrto

Directed all aspects of multifunctional nutrition project involving multiple locations. Accountable for process R&D formulation development, vendor sourcing, contract negotiations, validation, analytical method development, and cGMP manufacturing. Managed $3MM+ annual budget. Oversaw 18-member team.

Impact: Steered activities of bioprocess R&D group with direct accountability for all facets of process development for nutrition and consumer sector.

Represented department in strategic planning process and creation of product portfolio which included biopolymers, pharmaceutical ingredients, cardiovascular, and cancer prevention platforms.

Led newly formed, internal Natural Products Isolation function, managing $10MM+ project budget to design infrastructure and purchase facility equipment.

1997 - 1998

Associate Director, Process Development

DepoTech Corporation

Led Process Development and Engineering teams. Responsible for aseptic process design, automation, scale-up, and manufacture of aseptically filled sustained release products. Coordinated manufacturing for launch of company’s first FDA-approved product. Supported IND and NDA submissions and validation of key products. Participated in FDA’s Pre-Approval Inspection (PAI) and European Inspection for DepoTech’s first manufacturing facility. In charge of $3MM annual budget and 12 talented B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. level professionals.

Impact: Propelled smooth transfer of technology from bench to manufacturing scales for 3 new sustained release products. Received FDA approval for two products which are now on the market.

1995 - 1997

Manager, Process Development

DepoTech Corporation

Charged with 10X process scale up for company's first sustained drug delivery product release. Designed, procured, and installed aseptic processing equipment, instrumentation and automation for company’s new pilot plant facility.

1994 - 1995

Senior Process Engineer

DepoTech Corporation

Designed critical new 1X process for company’s first sustained product release. Led process development team members in pilot plant manufacturing of pre-clinical and clinical supply requirements. Advanced and bolstered engineering design, specifications, and installation of utility equipment. Simultaneously managed sterile product manufacturing as well as plant operations, production planning, and documentation.

1992 - 1994

Research Engineer

DuPont, Central R&D

Education

Education
1988 - Present

M.S.

UCLA

Thesis: “Group Contribution Methods for Coal-Derived Liquids: Hydrogen Solubility Using a UNIFAC Approach”

1992

Ph.D.

University of Delaware

Dissertation: “Separation of Biomolecules Using Aqueous Two-Phase Systems”

1985

B.S.

Arya-Mehr (Sharif) University of Technology

Graduated First in Class·Top 3% of University Students