Photocure appoints Susanne Strauss as Vice President and General Manager of Europe

Published: 1 July 2020Organisational Announcements

Oslo, Norway, 1 July 2020: Photocure ASA (OSE:PHO), today announced the appointment of Susanne Strauss as Vice President and General Manager of Europe, effective 1 July 2020.

“I am pleased to welcome Susanne Strauss to the Photocure team and I am confident that Susanne’s background and experience will lend itself to the success launch of our European-wide organization this fall. Susanne will report directly to me in her role and will be a member of Photocure’s leadership team. In addition, as part of building the larger European organization, we will integrate our current Nordic operation led by Kristin Nyberg under Susanne’s leadership,” says Dan Schneider, President and Chief Executive Officer of Photocure.

Ms. Strauss brings over 20 years of international leadership experience in medical devices, life sciences and pharma, living and working across Europe and Asia with occasional remits in the U.S. Most recently Ms. Strauss held the position of General Manager of Asia Pacific for legacy BTG at Boston Scientific based in Hong Kong after leading BTG’s Interventional Pulmonology Business as VP Commercial and expanding BTG’s Interventional Oncology Business into Europe. Before that she worked in leadership positions for companies such as Convatec, Janssen-Cilag and Baxter. She holds a PhD in Technical Chemistry and an MBA from SDA Bocconi.

The appointment follows the agreement to regain the Hexvix® sales, marketing and distribution rights in Europe and other markets currently controlled by Ipsen Pharma SAS on 1 October 2020.

“To execute on this opportunity and its global strategy, Photocure is establishing its commercial operations in Europe, with key leads already hired both at country level and in the global functions to support the European organization,” Schneider adds. Ms. Strauss and these key leaders will be part of the ongoing comprehensive transition activities in collaboration with Ipsen teams. Ms. Strauss will establish a European Headquarters, hire the European commercial team and oversee the integration with other functions to form a complete European organization. She will work on the development of new growth strategies and the execution of tactics in key markets throughout Europe.

“The transition activities are on track and Photocure is in the process of establishing a distribution and third-party logistics network. We are fully confident that we will be operationally and commercially ready for a smooth handover on October 1. The ongoing transition activities are being facilitated by our deep knowledge of the disease state and our product. We intend to leverage our expertise by applying the commercial success and strong growth in the Nordic and the U.S. markets to the European region,” Schneider concludes.


Notes to editors

About Hexvix®/Cysview® (hexaminolevulinate HCl)
Hexvix®/Cysview® is a drug that is selectively taken up by tumor cells in the bladder making them glow bright pink during Blue Light Cystoscopy (BLCTM). BLC™ with Hexvix® /Cysview® improves the detection of tumors and leads to more complete resection, fewer residual tumors and better management decisions. Cysview® is the tradename in the U.S. and Canada, Hexvix® is the tradename in all other markets.

About Bladder Cancer
Bladder cancer ranks as the sixth most common cancer worldwide with 1 650 000 prevalent cases (5-year prevalence rate), 550 000 new cases and almost 200 000 deaths annually in 2018.1Approx. 75% of all bladder cancer cases occur in men.1 It has a high recurrence rate with an average of 61% in year one and 78% over five years.2 Bladder cancer has the highest lifetime treatment costs per patient of all cancers.3

Bladder cancer is a costly, potentially progressive disease for which patients have to undergo multiple cystoscopies due to the high risk of recurrence. There is an urgent need to improve both the diagnosis and the management of bladder cancer for the benefit of patients and healthcare systems alike. 

Bladder cancer is classified into two types, non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) and muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC), depending on the depth of invasion in the bladder wall. NMIBC remains in the inner layer of cells lining the bladder. These cancers are the most common (75%) of all BC cases and include the subtypes Ta, carcinoma in situ (CIS) and T1 lesions. In MIBC the cancer has grown into deeper layers of the bladder wall. These cancers, including subtypes T2, T3 and T4, are more likely to spread and are harder to treat.4

1 Globocan. Incidence/mortality by population. Available at: 
2 Babjuk M, et al. Eur Urol. 2019; 76(5): 639-657

3 Sievert KD et al. World J Urol 2009;27:295–300
4 Bladder Cancer. American Cancer Society.

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