Board of Directors
Mr. Dessen has 30+ years of international experience within sales, marketing and senior level management in various companies within the areas of specialty chemicals, pharmaceutical raw materials, pharmaceuticals and biotechnology. Before joining AlgiPharma, he was CEO of FMC Biopolymer AS and Global Business Director of NovaMatrix, both entities are part of FMC Corp. (NYSE: FMC). Arne Dessen is a chemical engineer with specialization in biotechnology at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Trondheim, Norway. He is a citizen of Norway.
Yngvar P. Berg
Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
Mr. Berg is a business owner and has 20 years’ experience of leadership and management of his family’s businesses within the areas of investments in several industries including shipping, maritime and offshore oil-field services, real estate, infra-structure and other investments. Mr. Berg is one of the founding equity partners and significant majority shareholder of AlgiPharma AS. He has experience from banking (Shipping Department of DnC (now DNB) in Oslo, Norway) and shipping (Shipping Company Lauritzen Reefers, Copenhagen, Denmark). Mr. Berg has a B.Sc. in electrical engineering from Brown University, Providence, USA and an MBA from Columbia Business School, New York City, USA. Mr. Berg is a citizen of Norway.
Dr. Preston Campbell served at the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation for 25 years where he focused on Cystic Fibrosis (CF) drug discovery and development. After a successful career as a Pediatric Pulmonologist at Vanderbilt University, he joined the Foundation as Executive Vice President of Medical Aﬀairs in 1998. In 2015, he became the Foundation’s President and CEO. During his tenure at the Foundation, he oversaw the Foundation’s research initiatives and its collaborative drug discovery and development program. He has extensive experience with numerous companies helping them navigate discovery or clinical development eﬀorts. These resulted in the approval of twelve CF therapies including four that treat the basic defect in CF. The most recent was Trikafta, which beneﬁts 93 percent of people with the disease. The survival of people with CF during this time has increased dramatically. He retired in 2023 and remains involved with drug discovery and development as an independent consultant. He is a citizen of the United States of America.
Dr Charles Johnson is an independent consultant with over 30 years’ experience in the biotechnology industry. He gained his degree in medicine at the University of Cape Town and specialised in Paediatrics and subsequently pulmonology with a particular interest in cystic fibrosis. He completed his Paediatric Pulmonary Fellowship at Washington University and continued to practice medicine for 18 years before moving to the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry. He has held leadership positions APT Pharmaceuticals, Inspire, Vertex and Neurotech. While Vice President and Head of the Immunology and Tissue Repair clinical group at Genentech he had responsibility for the development and approvals of XOLAIR®, for asthma, LUCENTIS® for wet age-related macular degeneration and RITUXAN® for rheumatoid arthritis. He has published widely in the scientific literature in his field of expertise and presented clinical data at international medical conferences. He is a citizen of the United States of America.
Mr. Mike Walters brings almost 40 years of business experience in pharmaceuticals. He began his career at Johnson and Johnson, and during his 14-year tenure took on roles of increasing responsibility within sales and marketing management and led training and senior management development for two of its operating companies. He left Johnson and Johnson in 1996 to start his first company, an organization focused on building the commercial infrastructure for organizations with no experience in product introductions and lifecycle management in the US. Much of his career has focused on Cystic Fibrosis, where he founded Source CF (which was sold to Eurand Pharmaceuticals in 2007), MVW Nutritionals and CF Global Services. He has led each of these companies to bring to market many of the products that are standard of care today. Mr. Walters attended Vanderbilt University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Biochemistry and Chemistry. He is a citizen of the United States.
Mr. Schnitler is a Norwegian business leader and former President of the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprises (NHO) (1994-1996). He has served as State Secretary at the Ministry of Trade and Industry in the Norway, and has been CEO of several companies including Saga Petroleum (1998–2000). He was the Managing Director of Norwegian conglomerate Kværner’s global shipbuilding division from 1990 to 1998. Mr Schnitler is a member of the Board of Directors of various Norwegian companies, and has an M.Sc. from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Trondheim, Norway. He is a citizen of Norway.
Yngvar P. Berg
Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
Mr. Berg is a business owner and has 20 years’ experience of leadership and management of his family’s businesses within the areas of investments in several industries including shipping, maritime and offshore oil-field services, real estate, infra-structure and other investments. Mr. Berg is one of the founding equity partners and significant majority shareholder of AlgiPharma. He has experience from banking (Shipping Department of DnC (now DNB) in Oslo, Norway) and shipping (Shipping Company Lauritzen Reefers, Copenhagen, Denmark). Mr. Berg has a B.Sc. in electrical engineering from Brown University, Providence, USA and an MBA from Columbia Business School, New York City, USA. Mr. Berg is a citizen of Norway.
Chief Operating Officer (COO) and Chairman of the Board of Directors
Mr. Dessen is a founder of AlgiPharma and has been with the company since its establishment in 2006. He has 30+ years of international experience within sales, marketing and senior level management in various companies within the areas of specialty chemicals, pharmaceutical raw materials, pharmaceuticals and biotechnology. Before founding AlgiPharma, he was CEO of FMC Biopolymer AS and Global Business Director of NovaMatrix. Mr. Dessen is a chemical engineer with specialization in biotechnology at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Trondheim, Norway. Mr. Dessen is a citizen of Norway.
Chief Financial Officer (CFO)
Mr. Herstrøm has more than 35 years of industrial experience from financial and operational management and accounting. He has been COO and Managing Director of various mid-size Norwegian companies. He was COO at Metronor AS (1995-1999) and director for the company’s subsidiaries in Germany and the US. Since 1999 he has been CFO of the Drammen Shipyard group of companies which has operations within maritime services, real estate and investments. Mr. Herstrøm is educated within business administration. Mr. Herstrøm is a citizen of Norway.
Yngve Mikkelsen, MD
Chief Medical Officer (CMO)
Dr. Yngve Mikkelsen has twenty years of healthcare and industry management experience in addition to more than fifteen years of experience in clinical development from pharma, biotech and MedTech. He has worked as the Medical Director/Team leader for Pfizer EUCANZ, medical director in Biogen, EVP/CMO Akershus university hospital, and EVP/CMO LINK Medical Research. Dr Mikkelsen is also an objective world evidence (RWE) and health technology (HTA) expert with 20 RWE studies and 50 HTA submissions. Dr. Mikkelsen is a medical doctor with a clinical specialty in anesthesiology and holds a Master of Management from the Norwegian Business School, a Master of Science in health economics, policy and management from the London School of Economics, and a Doctor of Business Administration from Cranfield University. In his role as EVP and CMO of LINK Medical, before joining AlgiPharma, Dr Mikkelsen developed a professional service consulting service to include early development, HTA and RWE guiding industry in developing reimbursable technologies benefiting patients. Dr. Mikkelsen is a citizen of Norway.
Philip D. Rye, PhD
Chief Scientific Officer (CSO)
Dr. Rye has been with AlgiPharma since 2012. Dr. Rye has a wide range of skills and expertise spanning both academic research and commercial in vitro and in vivo diagnostic development. He gained his doctorate at the University of Leicester, UK in 1990. His postdoctoral research experience from UK and Norway includes glycoconjugate biochemistry, animal models, cell biology, and biochemistry. Dr. Rye has 16 years experience in academic research and over 19 years experience in the diagnostics and pharmaceutical industry in both research and management roles at Axis-Shield, Diagenic and GE Healthcare. He is co-inventor on 10 patents pending and has over 55 peer reviewed articles in international medical and biochemical journals. Dr. Rye has dual citizenship of the United Kingdom and Norway.
Hugo Flaten MD
Director of Drug Safety (QPPV)
Dr. Flaten has been with AlgiPharma since 2015 and is an M.D. with over 24 years’ experience in the pharmaceutical industry on clinical safety assessment and risk management of pharmaceuticals and medical devices. Dr Flaten was Head of the Global Pharmacovigilance Organisation in GE Healthcare for 6 years and is a registered QPPV in the EU/EAA. He has managed multiple inspections from the regulatory authorities including, MHRA, EMA, NOMA, FDA and local regulatory agencies. Dr. Flaten has an in-depth knowledge of clinical research and the development of pharmaceuticals. Dr. Flaten is a citizen of Norway.
Ms. Ryan is a pharmacist with 20 years’ experience in global development and marketing of pharmaceuticals, holding roles in senior strategic planning, business development and clinical program management in big pharma, biotechnology, and CROs, in Australasia and the UK. Her industry career started at Glaxo, working in both Clinical Development and Commercial Operations. She led the Clinical Operations in the successful startup of a global full service CRO directing projects for many companies such as SmithKline and GlaxoWellcome (now GSK), Zeneca (now Astra Zeneca), Pfizer, Rhone-Poulenc (now Sanofi), Behring, CSL, and many others. Ms Ryan has been a consultant to the industry on strategic drug development, and directed the Australian subsidiary of the Norwegian biopharma, Photocure ASA. She has a Bachelor of Pharmacy from Monash University, an MBA from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, and is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Ms Ryan is based in Melbourne and is an Australian citizen.
Anne-Karine Haflan has 15 years of experience as an independent consultant in the QA/Regulatory field for the Medical Device and Pharmaceutical Industry. She has core competence in Quality Assurance for Medical Device and Medicinal Products, ISO 13485, GMP, MDR, IVDR, Risk Management, Quality Auditor, Validation, R&D Administration, and Project Management. She is a qualified Lead Auditor for Medical Devices at DNV Product Assurance AS. She has an MSc in chemistry from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim, Norway, and has previously held positions in the biotechnology sector including R&D Manager/Development Director Axis-Shield PoC AS, Research Scientist, Dynal Biotech AS, Research Scientist at SINTEF, and Research Scientist Isotope Lab at the Institute for Energy Technology (IFE). Anne-Karine Haflan is a citizen of Norway.
Alexander Åstrand, PhD
Senior Scientist and Project Manager
Dr. Åstrand joined AlgiPharma in September 2019. He is a synthetic organic chemist and has a Ph.D. (2013) in medicinal chemistry from the School of Pharmacy, University of Oslo, Norway. He has been a Marie S. Curie postdoctoral fellow working jointly at the Technische Universität München, Germany and at the University of Oslo where he was studying medicinal- and organometallic chemistry related to zinc biochemistry, ligand design and catalysis. Dr Åstrand is a co-inventor of several patents related to antibiotic drug development and cancer drug development as well as an author of more than 15 peer-reviewed journal articles. Dr. Åstrand was from 2015-2018 in charge of a team of synthetic chemists at the University of Oslo which ultimately resulted in a spin-off company developing new treatments to combat antibiotic resistance. Dr. Åstrand is a citizen of Norway.
Senior Manager CMC/RA (Consultant)
Hilde Foros is a consultant for AlgiPharma in the role of Senior Manager CMC/RA (Chemistry, Manufacturing & Controls / Regulatory Affairs). She has an MSc in chemical engineering with specialization in biotechnology from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Trondheim, Norway. She has nearly 20 years’ experience from the pharmaceutical industry in Product/Application Specialist roles for pharmaceutical alginates in FMC BioPolymer AS, as a Senior Scientist in the European Pharma Technical Service team of FMC BioPolymer in Brussels and as Technical Service Manager in NovaMatrix/FMC BioPolymer AS, and more recently as the Regulatory Affairs Sr. Manager (CMC) in BASF AS (former Pronova BioPharma). Ms. Foros is a citizen of Norway.
Ivana Smiljanic PhD
Quality Assurance Manager
Ivana joined AlgiPharma in September 2021 as a Quality Assurance Manager. She has a PhD in Pharmacokinetics and Clinical Pharmacy from the University of Beograd in Serbia. She has 7 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry in quality control of medicines, quality assurance and implementation of GMP and GDP. She also has experience in validation processes, regulatory documentation, change control, and bioequivalence studies. Dr Smiljanic has dual citizenship of Serbia and Norway.
Ole Tobias joined AlgiPharma in March 2023 as accounts manager. He has a master’s degree in finance from BI Norwegian Business School. He has previously worked at Norwegian banks (DNB Bank AS and Sparebanken Øst), and more recently four years as an accountant at the international financial services accounting and auditing firm BDO AS. Mr. Fevang is a citizen of Norway.