Mark Hammond succeeds Dr Clarke as PBD Biotech’s new CEO, taking up the role after 6 months in post as the company’s Commercial Director.
“As we launch our first major, multi-million pound funding round to support ongoing test commercialisation, it is time to hand over the running of PBD Biotech to someone who is able to make a full-time commitment to take the company to that next level,” said Dr Clarke, who helped co-found the diagnostics biotech five years ago, and was named its CEO when the company officially launched in November 2016.
PBD Biotech initially developed its novel Actiphage® technology to detect devastating livestock diseases including bovine TB and Johne’s disease.
In the past three years the company has raised almost £700,000 through angel investment and previous seed funding rounds. This helped set up a Canadian subsidiary, providing a base for PBD Biotech’s commercial and manufacturing operations in North America.
In 2018, the Actiphage test began selling on a global scale while the UK government’s Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) approved the technology for exceptional private use on farms experiencing chronic TB breakdowns.
Tom Green, chairman of PBD Biotech’s Board of Directors, said, “On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank Berwyn for his outstanding contribution to PBD Biotech.
“Under his leadership, PBD Biotech has achieved considerable strategic and operational progress and is set for commercial success. We look forward to having Berwyn’s continued insight and expertise on the Board.”
Having grown the business from a biotech start-up to an international company that has been involved in trade delegations, scientific trials and a number of awards, Dr Clarke culminated his role with an appointment at Buckingham Palace, where he and co-founders Drs Cath Rees and Ben Swift were presented with the 2019 Royal Dairy Innovation Award signalling Actiphage’s significance for the future of the dairy industry.
Berwyn concluded: “I am immensely proud of the progress we have made in the company’s comparatively short lifespan – from gaining government recognition to securing a number of international patents, and establishing an overseas office.
“I would like to thank all at PBD Biotech for their contributions and wish my colleagues the very best in their ongoing efforts to deliver fast, effective mycobacterial detection across multiple markets and geographies.”