Swiss Biotech Success Stories

An independent jury of experts annually selects the laureates of the Swiss Biotech Success Stories.

Jürg Zürcher

President of the jury
Independent biotechnology leader and expert

Jürg Zürcher has more than 33 years of experience as a certified public accountant with one of the “Big 4” firms, 23 of which as a partner. The focus of his clients was in the life sciences sector, where he served clients ranging from start-ups to multinationals. He successfully assisted several of his clients in capital market transactions on the SIX Swiss Exchange as well as on NASDAQ.

In addition to his auditing activities, Jürg Zürcher was jointly responsible for the annual publication of the Swiss Biotech Report from 2004 to 2021. He presented the report to the media as well as to the participants of the Swiss Biotech Day.

Jürg Zürcher was a regular speaker at the Universities of Basel and Lugano on topics relating to start-ups in the life sciences sector.

In the years 2019 – 2021, Jürg Zürcher was a member of the Life Sciences Commission of the Basel Chamber of Commerce.

Jürg Zürcher studied business administration with a focus on auditing at the University of St. Gallen and graduated with a licentiate.

Igor Fisch

President Fongit
CEO & Co-Founder New Biologix

Igor Fisch is President of Fongit, Switzerland’s premier innovation incubator. Igor is also CEO and Co-founder of NewBiologix, a start-up active in gene therapies. Formerly, he was CEO and Co-founder of Selexis, a world-leading cell line development company. With a successful exit in 2017, Igor was instrumental in guiding Selexis to develop technologies that help biopharmaceutical companies manufacture biologic drugs such as monoclonal antibodies. Under his leadership, this resulted in 10 marketed products. He obtained his PhD at the University of Geneva and continued his postdoctoral studies under Nobel laureate, Prof. Sir Gregory Winter. Igor sits on the boards of Igyxos and Fluosphera.

Stefanie Flückiger-Mangual

CEO and Co-Founder 

Stefanie Flückiger-Mangual is one of Tolremo’s scientific founders and experts in the field of drug resistance in cancer therapy. She is a biomedical scientist and biochemist by training at the University of Fribourg and the ETH Zurich. Stefanie holds a Ph.D. in Molecular and Translational Biomedicine from ETH Zurich. She led the team of scientists who discovered novel molecular mechanisms that can be exploited to prevent the development of resistance to cancer therapies.

Gabrielle Gache

Head of Business Development (EMEA)
Santen Pharmaceutical

Gabrielle joined Santen in June 2022, as Head of Business Development EMEA bringing a wealth of experience that she acquired throughout her career in commercial and business development roles with Pfizer, Vifor and OM Pharma, as well as having created and run her own business development consultancy. Gabrielle has a proven track record in finalising multiple licensing deals, developing commercial partnerships, leveraging alliance management opportunities and managing M&A reviews and processes.

Between 2015 and 2022, Gabrielle chaired the Board of the Swiss Healthcare Licensing Group (Swiss HLG) and is currently a board member of the Swiss HLG and the International Partnering in Life-Science Society (IPLS).

Gabrielle holds an Executive MBA from HEC Paris, is of German nationality and has lived in Switzerland since 2009.

Seraina Gross

Business Journalist

Seraina Gross has been working as a journalist for almost 30 years. She held positions at several newspapers including Tages-Anzeiger and Basler Zeitung as a political reporter, head of department and correspondent in Geneva. In 2015 she joined Handelszeitung, a Swiss business weekly, as a senior reporter covering the life sciences industry. Seraina studied literature and history in Zurich and Basel. In addition, she holds a Master of Advanced Studies in Marketing Management and Business Development from the University of Basel.

Gabriela Güntherodt

EY Partner & Biotech Sector Leader Switzerland/Europe West

Gabriela Güntherodt is leading the Biotech sector for EY Switzerland and is the office managing partner in Basel. She supports emerging biotechs up to global multinational pharma companies throughout the different growth stages and service lines.Gabriela studied Biochemistry at the University of Basel and Scripps Research Institute, San Diego USA and has a MAS in Marketing Management and Business Administration.

Chandra P. Leo

Investment Advisor Private Equity
HBM Partners

Over 25 years experience in the Venture Capital Industry. PhD ETH Zurich in Natural Sciences and Industrial Engineering. Previously in management functions at Innoventure, Credit Suisse, Apax and Vontobel. Board member of Westmed and Reha Technology.

Daniela Marino

Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder

Daniela Marino is CEO and co-founder of Cutiss AG, a spin-off of the University of Zurich, that was awarded as #TOP1 Swiss start-up 2020. Daniela received her MSc in Biotechnologies from the University of Milan in 2005 and her Ph.D. at the ETH Zurich in 2009. During her postdoctoral studies at the Tissue Biology Research Unit in Zurich, she specialized in tissue engineering of skin and gained expertise in project management and product development. Daniela’s professional mission is to provide a real solution to patients suffering from severe skin defects.

Thomas Staffelbach
Secretary of the jury
TS Kommunikation

Thomas Staffelbach is an experienced communications director, former head of communications and investor relations of several listed and private companies. Thomas is passionate about innovation and the people behind it. For almost 15 years, he has been advising biotech and pharmaceutical companies to position the medical and commercial potential of their innovations.