Akebia Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: AKBA), a biopharmaceutical company with the purpose to better the lives of people impacted by kidney disease, today announced the appointment of Nicholas Grund as Chief Commercial Officer. Mr. Grund is a seasoned pharmaceutical executive with significant operational, commercial and strategic leadership experience across renal and specialty markets.
“Nik is a profoundly knowledgeable executive with an impressive track record of leading commercial initiatives within the renal market,” said John P. Butler, Chief Executive Officer of Akebia. “His operational versatility and breadth of expertise in customer facing roles will be critical for Akebia as we prepare for the vadadustat launch in the U.S., if approved, and continue our goal to maximize Auryxia® (ferric citrate) revenue. We are pleased to welcome Nik to Akebia as he further strengthens our leadership team.”
Prior to joining Akebia, Mr. Grund served as President of Eurofins Transplant Genomics where he steered organizational change and facilitated continuous operating efficiency improvements and revenue growth. He was also Chief Commercial Officer of AMAG Pharmaceuticals where he managed commercial activities across four business units. Mr. Grund also held positions of increasing responsibility at Sanofi in its specialty care business and oversaw operations of its renal business unit.
“I am delighted to join the Akebia team at this pivotal moment,” said Mr. Grund. “Akebia has already built an impressive renal-focused commercial organization and their deep commitment to patients and connection to providers is evident. I am keen to build on the teams’ efforts to prepare for the potential vadadustat launch with the ultimate goal of serving dialysis patients.”
About Akebia Therapeutics
Akebia Therapeutics, Inc. is a fully integrated biopharmaceutical company with the purpose to better the lives of people impacted by kidney disease. Akebia was founded in 2007 and is headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts. For more information, please visit our website at www.akebia.com, which does not form a part of this release.
Vadadustat is an oral hypoxia-inducible factor prolyl hydroxylase inhibitor designed to mimic the physiologic effect of altitude on oxygen availability. At higher altitudes, the body responds to lower oxygen availability with stabilization of hypoxia-inducible factor, which can lead to increased red blood cell production and improved oxygen delivery to tissues. Vadadustat is not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Vadadustat is approved in Europe and Australia for the treatment of symptomatic anemia due to CKD in adult patients on chronic maintenance dialysis. In Japan, vadadustat is approved as a treatment for anemia due to CKD in both dialysis-dependent and non-dialysis dependent adult patients.