Brii Bio board members and co-founders are visionary investors, successful businesspersons, and proven pharmaceutical industry leaders.
CEO & Founding Partner, 6 Dimensions Capital
Leon Chen, Ph.D., is Founder and Managing Partner of Frontline BioVentures. In May 2017, Frontline BioVentures (Frontline) and WuXi Healthcare Ventures (WuXi Ventures) merged to form 6 Dimensions Capital, one of the largest healthcare-focused investment groups with unique capabilities and extensive coverage across China and the United States. Dr. Chen then became 6 Dimensions Capital’s CEO. Before founding Frontline BioVentures in 2012, Dr. Chen was a Partner with Fidelity Growth Partners Asia and a Managing Partner with BioVeda China. Since 2005, Dr. Chen has led a number of investments in the life science sector in China including CITIC Pharmaceuticals, Hile Biopharma, Hua Medicine, Innovent Biologics, Adagene, TenNor Therapeutics, MDDF, Coherent Biopharma, Yikon Genomics, Huazhou, Bio Kangtai, and Neusoft Medical.
Dr. Chen has served as a management consultant and a business adviser to pharmaceutical and biotech companies; past affiliations include McKinsey & Company and Ernst & Young, LLP.
Dr. Chen also worked as a research scientist at Schering-Plough in New Jersey. He was a member of the discovery team of “VYTORIN”/”ZETIA” – now a multibillion dollar drug.
He received a B.S. from Peking University, a Ph.D. with top honors from Catholic University of Leuven, and was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dr. Chen holds six issued U.S. patents and co-authored the 14th and 15th Ernst & Young Biotechnology Report.
Co-founder, President, and Chief Executive Officer
Zhi Hong, Ph.D., is Co-founder, President, and Chief Executive Officer. Prior to starting Brii Bio, Dr. Hong was Senior Vice President and Head of GlaxoSmithKline's (GSK) Infectious Diseases Therapy Area Unit. He was widely credited as the key architect of GSK's comeback and success in HIV & Infectious Diseases medicine discovery and development. Under his leadership, ViiV Healthcare’s (a joint venture between GSK, Pfizer, and Shionogi) HIV business was revitalized with the approval of Tivicay & Triumeq. Dr. Hong was the champion of GSK's effort in long-acting HIV treatment & prevention therapies. He also built GSK's efforts to cure HBV and HIV infections. GSK now has one of the most innovative pipelines against infectious diseases.
Dr. Hong is a public health advocate who has helped establish multiple public-private partnerships with the U.S./E.U. governments (DTRA, BARDA, NIH & IMI) and philanthropic organizations (Gates Foundation & Wellcome Trust). In the last two years, he helped to create GSK's Institute for Infectious Diseases and Public Health in Beijing, China. Dr. Hong started Ardea Biosciences (later acquired by AstraZeneca). He also held leadership positions at Valeant Pharmaceuticals and Schering-Plough Research Institute (now Merck). Dr. Hong has more than 25 years of experience in drug discovery and development and has brought more than 30 compounds into development, including many that have been approved and launched. He has served as a board member of Anacor Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Pfizer) and ViiV Healthcare, and also chaired the board of Qura Therapeutics.
Co-founder and Managing Director, ARCH Venture Partners
Robert Nelsen is a Co-founder and Managing Director of ARCH Venture Partners. He joined ARCH at its founding and played a significant role in the early sourcing, financing, and development of more than 30 companies, including 12 which have reached valuations exceeding $1 billion. His seed and early-stage investments include Illumina (ILMN); Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (ALNY); Juno Therapeutics (acquired by Celgene); Agios Pharmaceuticals (AGIO); Sage Therapeutics (SAGE); Ikaria (acquired by Madison Dearborn); Kythera Biopharmaceuticals (KYTH); Aviron (AVIR, acquired by Medimmune-MEDI); Sapphire Energy; NetBot (acquired by Excite-ATHM); R2 Technology (acquired by Hologic-HOLX); XenoPort (XNPT); Caliper Life Sciences (CALP, acquired by PerkinElmer); Bluebird Bio (BLUE); Trubion Pharmaceuticals (TRBN, acquired by Emergent BioSolutions-EBS); Adolor (ADLR, acquired by Cubist-CBST); deCODE Genetics (acquired by Amgen-AMGN); Array BioPharma (ARRY); Nanosys; GenVec (GNVC); IDUN Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Pfizer- PFE); Genomica (GNOM, acquired by Exelixis-EXEL); Classmates.com (acquired by United Online-UNTD); Nura (acquired by Omeros-OMER); Receptos (RCPT); Kilimanjaro Energy; Hua Medicine; VLST; Ensemble Therapeutics; Accelerator; Theraclone Sciences; Fate Therapeutics (FATE); NextCODE Health; Bellerophon Therapeutics; Syros Pharmaceuticals; and Everyday Learning Corporation (acquired by Tribune Corp.-TRIB.)
Mr. Nelsen is a director of Agios Pharmaceuticals, Kythera Biopharmaceuticals, Sapphire Energy, Sage Therapeutics, Ensemble Therapeutics, Syros Pharmaceuticals, NextCODE Health, and serves as Chairman of Hua Medicine. He previously served as a trustee of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Institute, the Institute for Systems Biology, and as a director of the National Venture Capital Association. Mr. Nelsen holds an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago and a B.S. from the University of Puget Sound with majors in economics and biology.
CEO of Vir Biotechnology
George A. Scangos, Ph.D., is the CEO and a member of the Board of Directors of Vir Biotechnology. Previously, he was the CEO and a member of the Board of Directors of Biogen since July 2010. From 1996 to July 2010, Dr. Scangos served as the President and CEO of Exelixis, Inc., a drug discovery and development company, where he continues to serve on the board. From 1993 to 1996, Dr. Scangos served as President of Bayer Biotechnology, where he was responsible for research, business development, process development, manufacturing, engineering, and quality assurance of Bayer’s biological products. Before joining Bayer in 1987, Dr. Scangos was a professor of biology at Johns Hopkins University, where he is still an adjunct professor. Dr. Scangos served as non-executive Chairman of Anadys Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, from 2005 to July 2010 and was a director of the company from 2003 to July 2010. He currently serves on the boards of directors of Agilent, Exelixis, and Decibel Therapeutics.
Dr. Scangos served as the Chair of PhRMA from March 2016 to January 2017. He also served as the chair of the California Healthcare Institute in 2010 and was a member of the board of the Global Alliance for TB Drug Development until 2010. He is a member of the boards of trustees of the Boston Museum of Science and the Biomedical Science Careers Program, and a member of the National Board of Visitors of the University of California, Davis School of Medicine.
Founding and Managing Partner, Sequoia China
Neil Shen is the Founding and Managing Partner of Sequoia China. He is also Co-founder of Ctrip.com (NASDAQ: CTRP) and Homeinns Hotel Group (NASDAQ: HMIN).
Mr. Shen is a member of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), and also serves on a number of philanthropic, public sector, and industry associations, including as Chairman of Yale Center Beijing Executive Council, Director of Yabuli China Entrepreneur Forum (CEF), Vice Chairman of the VC Funds Committee of Asset Management Association of China, Member of the Chief Executive's Council of Advisors on Innovation and Strategic Development, Member of Hong Kong Financial Services Development Council, Trustee of the Brookings Institution, Trustee of the Asia Society, Council Member of Future Forum, and Trustee of Shanghai Jiao Tong University.
Mr. Shen has been the highest-ranking Chinese investor on the Forbes Midas List from 2012 to 2018, and ascended to the top of the list in 2018. In 2017, he was also named one of the "100 Greatest Living Business Minds" by Forbes. He received his Master's degree from Yale University and Bachelor's degree from Shanghai Jiao Tong University.
Co-founder and Managing Partner, Boyu Capital
Sean Tong is Co-founder and Managing Partner of Boyu Capital, and currently serves on the board of a number of publicly listed and privately held companies. Prior to Boyu, he was a Managing Director and Head of Greater China at General Atlantic, LLC and Providence Equity Partners. He graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University.
Co-founder and Chairman, Yunfeng Capital
David Yu is the Co-founder and Chairman of Yunfeng Capital. In 2010, Mr. Yu started Yunfeng Capital, together with Jack Ma (Yun), Executive Chairman of Alibaba Group, and a group of successful entrepreneurs and influential industry leaders. Before that, from 2006 to 2008, Mr. Yu was the Co-chairman and President of Focus Media Holdings (NASDAQ: FMCN). In 2003, Mr. Yu started the Shanghai Target Media Co., LTD as the Founder and CEO.
Mr. Yu holds an M.A. in philosophy from Fudan University and an Executive M.B.A. from China Europe International Business School.