Ziccum appoints senior biotech manager as new COO

Ziccum has appointed senior international biotech engineering manager Xavier Turon as its new Chief Operating Officer. Turon will lead the team developing LaminarPace, Ziccum’s unique mass transfer drying system, and is bringing extensive academic and industrial experience. His appointment follows the recruitment of a new CFO as Ziccum delivers on its strategy of growing its management capabilities.

As Ziccum is progressing with a successful new strategy and business model, rewarded by recent agreements with leading Pharma and Biotech partners, the company is introducing a new position in its management team. A Chief Operating Officer has been recruited to manage the Operations team and to lead the important LaPaSim project for 3D-modelling of the LaminarPace technology. This strengthening of the Ziccum team will contribute to the successful development of the core technology, as well as help delivering results in the partnered projects.

Xavier Turon brings excellent industrial and academic expertise to the company. His track record in Chemical engineering and Life Science management is a valuable fit for Ziccum; Turon has deep expertise in biological drying processes, including freeze-drying and spray drying, as well as specific experience working in proteins and peptides. Most recently as Industrial Biotech Manager at Lipotec, Lubrizol Life Science in Spain, he led a team designing, developing and scaling up GMP-quality manufacturing plants for pilot as well as commercial scale for bioactive ingredients.

In addition, Turon has significant academic expertise. From 2008 – 2016 he was Assistant Professor at the Chemical Institute of Sarrià (IQS) in Barcelona, leading the Bioprocesses unit in developing and scaling up bioprocesses from benchtop to pilot. His international experience includes three years as Associate Researcher at the State University of North Carolina in the US, as well as background as a Doctoral Researcher in Chemical Engineering at Polytechnique Montreal, Canada’s leading engineering university.

Xavier Turon: “I am pleased and excited to join Ziccum. LaminarPace is a genuinely unique technology which will contribute to developing better biotherapeutics. It clearly fills an industrial need – I look forward to contributing to its ongoing technological and industrial development while joining the excellent, growing team at Ziccum. The stage is set for a major breakthrough in biopharmaceutical drying".

Ziccum CEO Ann Gidner: “Xavier is a very valuable recruitment for Ziccum, and we welcome him warmly. His extensive knowledge in chemical engineering science will help ensure the best possible advancements in the LaPaSim project and further strengthen our dialogues with teams and prospects. The role will be pivotal in driving successful LaminarPace development forward, to enable new, user-friendly formulations of RNA and other vital biotherapeutics”.

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Ziccum appoints senior biopharma executive as new CFO

Ziccum AB (publ) has appointed Johny Humaloja as its new CFO. Johny is a financial executive with decades of experience in the biopharma and biotech industries in Europe and the US. He will assume his new position on June 15. CEO Ann Gidner: “Johny’s profile is a perfect fit for us, as we keep moving forward. His appointment both contributes to and confirms our current international trajectory. We welcome him warmly”.

Johny Humaloja has extensive experience as a financial and controller executive in biopharma, biotech and medtech. He has served in senior positions in Europe and the US and is joining Ziccum from the position as CFO of Amniotics AB, where amongst other achievements he led the company through a successful IPO and listing on Nasdaq first north (in 2021). He will assume his new role at Ziccum on June 15th 2023.

Johny has an Executive MBA in Economics & Management from Lund University as well as a BSc in Business Administration & Economics. He brings extensive operational and industrial experience; he has served as a CFO, Financial and Logistics Director, Financial Control Director and as Plant Controller in the US of a large-scale biotech manufacturing facility with an annual budget of 110 MUSD. This is valuable additional expertise for Ziccum, which is taking its unique pharmaceutical drying technology LaminarPace forward to industrialization through international partnering by its licensing business model.

Johny’s appointment is part of the dynamic growth and development agenda at Ziccum. The company is currently also seeking to recruit a Chief Operating Officer, with international biopharma experience, as it continues to broaden and strengthen its strategic executive expertise. Ziccum’s current CFO, Frida Hjelmberg, will remain in the company for a good transition period.

CEO Ann Gidner: “I am delighted to welcome Johny to Ziccum. As we go forward driving partnered projects for licensing, a new team member with relevant, in-depth industry experience will be a great asset. I would like to thank Frida Hjelmberg for her dedicated work over the last few years. It has been a pleasure working with her. We look forward to having Johny onboard”.

Johny Humaloja: “this is a highly interesting opportunity and I’m very excited to join Ziccum, a true leader in its field with a unique technology and with significant potential. I look forward to helping the company realize that potential, moving Ziccum forward on its financial, operational, and transformational path, and driving an accelerated long-term growth journey”.

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ZICCUM AB appoints Ann Gidner as new CEO – ‘outstanding record in business development and leadership speaks for itself’, Chairman

Ann Gidner takes office as new CEO of Ziccum AB on May 9, 2022. Ann has extensive CEO and Business Development experience, driving growth in a wide range of early-stage life science companies. In a global career spanning 25+ years she has held senior positions in the US and Europe, including experience in outlicensing drug delivery technology.

With a strong global profile and powerful experience of building up and turning around life science startups, Ann will begin her role as new CEO for Ziccum on May 9. Ann combines long-running experience in designing and implementing new business models with a passion for creating new partnerships and achieving steep, sustainable growth.

Most recently Ann Gidner was CEO for SelectImmune Pharma AB (publ). She has served in CEO positions for AcuCort AB (publ) and Monocl AB and is currently a Director of the board at IcoNovo AB (publ). Ann has also held senior management roles in Life Science corporations across Europe, and in the US. In a 4-yr role as Director of Business Development for drug delivery technology company Albumedix A/S (formerly Novozymes Biopharma), she successfully established a pipeline and network of new partnerships and projects from the company’s headquarters in Copenhagen.

Ann has an MBA from Lund University and a MSc in Bioprocessing Engineering from Lund University and the elite ENSIGC (Ecole Nationale Supérieure d'Ingénieurs de Génie Chimique in Toulouse, France). She is a multilinguistic who is fluent in three languages.

Ziccum AB CEO Fredrik Sjövall: “We could not be happier in welcoming Ann to Ziccum. Her keen mind and outstanding leadership record speaks for itself. Her strategic insights and business development acumen will profoundly help us power new partnerships, patents and product development. The company is changing and moving forward – Ann will be pivotal to that. It will be truly exciting to have her onboard.”

Ann Gidner: “Ziccum AB offers a unique technology to serve the world far better with vaccinations, overcoming a number of financial and practical hurdles. Of course the Covid pandemic has emphazised how valuable this is to mankind. I am grateful and excited to contribute to this, joining a high caliber team to create the necessary outreach, both for company success and for global health.”

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ZICCUM AB utser Ann Gidner till ny VD – ”starka meriter inom affärsutveckling och ledarskap talar för sig själv”, ordförande.

Ann Gidner tillträder tjänsten som ny VD för Ziccum AB den 9 maj 2022. Gidner har lång erfarenhet av att vara VD och jobba med affärsutveckling. Hon har drivit tillväxt i ett brett spektrum av life science-företag i tidiga skeden. Ann har en global karriär som sträcker sig över nästan 30 år och inkluderar ledande befattningar i USA och Europa, inklusive erfarenhet av inlicensiering och utlicensiering av läkemedelsleveransteknologier.

Med en internationell erfarenhet av att bygga upp och vända life science startups kommer Ann Gidner att börja sin roll som ny VD för Ziccum den 9 maj. Ann kombinerar lång erfarenhet av att analysera och implementera nya affärsmodeller med en passion för att skapa nya partnerskap och uppnå hållbar tillväxt.

Ann kommer senast från positionen som VD för SelectImmune Pharma AB (publ). Hon har tidigare varit VD i AcuCort AB och Monocl AB och är nu styrelseledamot i IcoNovo AB. Ann har tidigare haft ledande befattningar i företag över hela Europa och USA. I en fyraårig roll som Director of Business Development för Albumedix A/S (tidigare Novozymes Biopharma), etablerade Ann framgångsrikt en pipeline och ett nätverk av nya partnerskap och projekt från företagets huvudkontor i Köpenhamn.

Ann har en MBA från Lunds universitet och en MSc i Bioprocessing Engineering från Lunds universitet och prestigeuniversitetet ENSIG (Ecole Nationale Supérieure d'Ingénieurs de Génie Chimique i Toulouse Frankrike.) Hon är en flerspråkig och talar flytande tre språk.

Ziccum ordförande Fredrik Sjövall: ”Vi är väldigt glada över att välkomna Ann till Ziccum. Hennes meriter inom affärsutveckling och ledarskap talar för sig själv. Hennes strategiska insikter i branschen och stora erfarenhet av affärsutveckling kommer att hjälpa oss att driva nya partnerskap, patent och produktutveckling. Företaget förändras och går framåt – Ann kommer att vara avgörande för det. Det blir verkligen spännande att få Ann ombord."

Ann Gidner: ”Ziccum AB erbjuder en unik teknik för att vaccinationer skall bli mer tillgängligt världen över och som kan övervinna ett antal ekonomiska och praktiska hinder. Naturligtvis har Covid-pandemin betonat hur värdefullt detta är för mänskligheten. Jag är tacksam och glad över att få bidra till detta och att ansluta till ett team med hög kaliber och för att skapa nödvändiga externa kontakter och partnerskap, både för företagets framgång och för global hälsa."

ZICCUM AB har utsett Frida Hjelmberg till ny CFO

(Lund, Sverige, oktober 26 2020) Ziccum AB har utsett Frida Hjelmberg till ny CFO fr.o.m 1 januari 2021.Frida har senast varit CFO på Spares Nordic AB från 2018 och tidigare anställd bl.a. som Head of Accounting, Egmont samt som revisor på KPMG. Frida har en Masters of Science in Business and Economics från Lunds Universitet. Frida kommer även att ha ett tydligt affärsfokus genom att beskriva de ekonomiska fördelarna med Ziccums teknologi.

Michael Owens, Ziccums nuvarande CFO, kommer att kvarvara i Ziccums organisation och övergå till en Controller-funktion.

"Det är ett stort nöje att kunna utnämna Frida till vår nya CFO. Hon kommer att ha en viktig roll i att kommunicera de ekonomiska värden som vi kan bidra med genom att öka vaccinationsgraden globalt.", säger Göran Conradson, Ziccums VD.

För mer information om Ziccum, vänligen kontakta:

Göran Conradson: VD 

E-mail: conradson@ziccum.com 

Mob: +46 709 61 55 99


Ziccum AB utvecklar nya, patenterade beredningar av vacciner där känslighet vid temperaturskillnader inte minst vid transporter begränsar medicinsk och därmed kommersiell potential. Med bolagets patenterade teknologi LaminarPace utvecklas torra beredningsformer av vaccin som i nuläget enbart finns i vätskeform. Därigenom kan Ziccum öka tillgängligheten av läkemedel och vaccin på befintliga – och öppna nya – marknader.

Ziccum AB: senior Astra Zeneca vaccine & biopharmaceutical strategist to be new Board member

Few people know the special risks and rewards of working with vaccines and biopharmaceuticals better than Astra Zeneca’s VP Mikaela Bruhammar. From 2012-2015 she led the team that launched and grew Astra Zeneca’s unique inhalable LAIV flu vaccine in Europe and US. Now she will bring her biologics/ vaccine expertise and broad pharma commercial experience to the Board of Ziccum AB. She will be proposed as new Board Member at the company’s Annual General Meeting on May 20.

“The rewards can be great, but the risks can too. Vaccines aren’t like other pharmaceuticals. For some companies they can be scary”. She should know. From 2012 to 2015 Astra Zeneca’s current Vice President of Nordic-Baltic Business Unit in Respiratory, Inflammation and Autoimmune disease (RIA), was the Global Head of Astra Zeneca’s Vaccine Franchise—successfully developing and commercializing Fluenz (Europe) / FluMist (the US), its inhalable Flu vaccine for children.

“The business model for vaccines is significantly different to other pharmaceuticals. Vaccines are heavily policy-driven. They demand a long-term commitment from developers and government—you can’t change or adjust your vaccine programs every other year. The extensive collaboration needed between commercial forces, the WHO and governments is unique. It requires a level of commitment that ‘new-to-vaccines’ pharma companies can find scary. You have to ask yourself ‘can you commit to continue supplying this vaccine for the next 50 years?’”

Bruhammar and her team faced all these challenges, and more serious ones, when commercializing Fluenz. Yet they launched successfully in just three years, an exceptionally short period. How did they ‘achieve the impossible’? And what can it teach Ziccum?


“It’s true we had a really challenging product”, says Bruhammar. “It was a live vaccine, a weakened version of the flu virus itself. Once thawed from its frozen form it only had a shelf life of 16 weeks. So you can imagine the logistics. On paper it was an impossible product to sell. But the thing is it was highly efficacious, highly potent, and it was a needle-free, nasal spray vaccine aimed at kids – who don’t like injections. Plus children are highly infectious carriers of flu in the general population. So if you can successfully immunize your paediatric population you get a powerful knock-on effect on your overall population, in fact you only need to inoculate 30% of children in order to have a population-wide impact. So that was the package of benefits. There was a triple win. For us, the developer; for NGOs and governments; and crucially, for patients. Everyone got a clear win out of it. And because of that, all of a sudden stakeholders were willing to be flexible to get over the 16-week shelf life, for instance the EU regulatory agency agreed to an annual tailor-made approval process for this specific vaccine, a key enabler for the EU launch. And in the UK the NHS trained special vaccinators to administer Fluenz to millions of school-children during 1-2 months every fall.”


 “I see a lot of the same excitement and potential with Ziccum right now as I saw with the Fluenz project back then,” says Bruhammar. “It’s super-exciting to be joining at such an interesting phase. As Fluenz shows, you have to paint the big opportunity in such a way that people get it immediately. I see that connection with Ziccum. You can tell Ziccum’s dry vaccines and biologics story in two sentences and people get it. There’s a momentum that has already built up around Ziccum, and a big picture. Now I want to see that momentum accelerate. And as I said, the triple win—showing clearly how the technology solves key problem for pharma developers, NGOs and governments—and patients, is crucial.

“For example, dry powder formulation solves the cold chain challenge, but how would it be for patients and clinics? For conditions that require multiple administrations many clinics want the patient to self-administer. They don’t want large patient traffic or a logistics chain in-clinic. So a nurse having to reconstitute and rehydrate large batches of dry vaccines back into liquid solution might not be a win for them. But if an autoinjector reconstituted the dry powder back into solution for the patient, in the pen or device, with sterile water behind a seal that remixed the solution with a couple of shakes—then you’re back in the game. And as Fluenz shows, if the solution is a win for everybody people will solve challenges. For large investors, being able to make major cold chain savings could make it well worth solving other challenges. Whilst for big-volume vaccinations like standard flu shots or MMR vaccine (measles, mumps and rubella that most children get at 1 and 3 years), if the clinic knows it has to administer 20 shots in the afternoon, and needs to reconstitute a batch in the morning, that’s still a saving that lets them administer more shots, because the price of the shots is lower, thanks to cold chain costs having been cut drastically. So dry formulation would obviously be a big benefit there. But it’s all about the real clinical setting and what Ziccum’s dry formulation capabilities actually look like in the end reality.  


“There are 2000 potential projects Ziccum technology could add value to. Applying Ziccum technology into the context of the real patient journey, making it real for patients and producers, is key to deciding which to prioritize and tackle first. It’s not until we see how the technology fits into the patient’s life and journey that we find the real value drivers and value points.

“A great partnership or collaboration scenario is where everybody wins. So it comes down to priorities. What is the scale we dare to grow to? Do we dare to dream big? The Fluenz case shows that even seemingly ‘impossible’ challenges can be overcome when you can demonstrate clearly how everyone wins. I drove forward commitment to vaccines within a company that was not really focussed on vaccines. It was a pivotal experience for me and gave me really great lessons in how to focus an organisation on vaccines and what to prepare for when moving towards developing vaccines.

“Plus, if we expand the definition of vaccines a little to include let’s say peptides genes or biologics which could be an on- or off- switch for an autoimmune disease say, then the opportunities are even bigger. There are some really promising auto switches for airway inflammation. What if you could switch-off asthma early on or stop COPD progression? For asthma and COPD – which are horrific diseases – these could stop that process, so people would not need to suffocate to death.

“I’m super-passionate about driving business and delivering results. I never hesitate to try, fail and try again. I believe dry formulations have a big part to play in vaccines and biologics, and I think that in inhaled biologics for sure there is a very visible lead or opportunity for the technology. With vaccines—there is currently human commitment from many of the most influential and progressive organizations on the planet. These groups and organisations have their eyes clearly on this, so maybe with their backing we can afford to think and dream bigger. I’m looking forward hugely to this journey.”

For more information about Ziccum, please contact:

Göran Conradson: CEO Ziccum AB

E-mail: conradson@ziccum.com

Mob: +46 709 61 55 99

About Ziccum

Ziccum AB (publ) develops new patented formulations of biological drugs where sensitivity to temperature differences, especially during transportation, currently limits medical and so commercial potential. The company’s patented technology, LaminarPace, develops dry powder formulations of drugs and vaccines that currently only exist in liquid form. By doing so Ziccum can increase the availability of drugs and vaccines in existing markets—and open up new ones.