Orthocell taps former PHI leader to chair its board of directors

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Australian regenerative medicine company Orthocell (ASX:OCC) has appointed John Van Der Wielen as independent non-executive chairman.

Dr Stewart Washer, who has served as executive chairman since April 2014, will transition to executive director.

Mr Van Der Wielen has over 35 years of international experience in wealth management, private banking, investments, and insurance, in the UK, Luxembourg, Malaysia and Australia.

He has held senior executive positions with several national and global financial services groups. Most recently, Mr Van Der Wielen was the CEO and managing director of private health insurer HBF.

Mr Van Der Wielen is a non-executive director of the Blackstone-owned Crown Resorts and chair of Crown Perth. He is a non-executive director of the Royal Flying Doctor Service in Western Australia and was recently appointed by the state's government to chair its Future Health Research and Innovation Fund.

Orthocell managing director Paul Anderson said, “We are delighted to welcome John to the Orthocell Board. He is a globally recognised executive with a passion for supporting innovative life science companies growing into significant international success stories, and for enhancing Australia’s capacity to translate local innovations into products that make a difference to clinical practice and patients’ lives.

"John is a dynamic and collaborative leader bringing significant expertise in corporate strategy, international growth, institutional and strategic investor engagement and M&A transactions. John’s broad experience will play an important role in the next growth phase at Orthocell and I am thrilled to be working alongside him, to advance the commercialisation of our promising products and pipeline."

Mr Van Der Wielen said, “I am very excited to be joining the senior leadership team at Orthocell at this pivotal stage in the Company’s development. I have been monitoring the Company’s significant progress including its recent landmark licensing deal with BioHorizons. I believe Orthocell is now extremely well placed to drive shareholder value by actively supporting distribution partners to ramp up sales in existing and additional international markets and to advance the commercialisation of its truly unique regenerative medicine portfolio.”