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Healthcare Mergers and Acquisitions Panel

“Focus on Scale and Diversification to Gain Competitive Advantage and Drive Earnings”

  • Moderator: Ken Hitchner ’92, Partner and Head of Healthcare Investment Banking, Goldman Sachs
  • Dan Apel, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Bayer Healthcare (US)
  • Perry Karsen, Chief Operations Officer, Celgene
  • Kristin Peck ’99, Executive Vice President Worldwide Business Development & Innovation, Pfizer
  • Stuart Smith '84, Co-Head and Managing Director of Healthcare Investment Banking, Credit Suisse
  • Sean Traynor, General Partner, Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe


  • Rationale and likelihood of Big Pharma mergers in the near-term, and further consolidation among specialty pharma companies.
  • Role M&A will play in the convergence of therapeutics, devices and diagnostics.
  • External growth strategies being employed by pharma and other medical products companies to increase their presence in emerging markets.
  • Expected consolidation within the healthcare services sector, and sub-sectors that will drive such M&A activity (providers, payors, HCIT, etc.).
  • Role, focus, and impact of private equity firms in healthcare dealmaking. 
  • Current state of the capital markets and its impact on healthcare deal flow.
  • How successful companies are organized to best identify, pursue, negotiate, and execute M&A and other business development initiatives.

Ken Hitchner
Partner and Head of Healthcare Investment Banking
Goldman Sachs

Ken is partner and head of the Healthcare Banking Group. He joined Goldman Sachs in 1991 as a member of the Corporate Finance Department. In 1995, Ken joined the Healthcare Group as a founding member. He became head of Goldman Sachs' global medical device banking practice in 1998 and the global pharmaceutical banking practice in 2001. He was named managing director in 2000 and partner in 2002. Prior to joining the firm, Ken was a lieutenant commander and naval aviator in the US Navy. Ken is a trustee and member of the board of Meridian Health Systems and a trustee of Monmouth University. He also serves on advisory councils at the University of Miami and the University of Colorado. Ken earned a BA from the University of Colorado and an MBA as a merit fellow from Columbia University Business School.

Dan Apel
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
Bayer Healthcare (US)

Daniel Apel is a SVP and Chief Financial Officer for Bayer HealthCare in the US with 20 years of experience in healthcare and pharmaceuticals. He held various positions of leadership in Bayer’s finance department, such as Head of global BHC Accounting and CFO Bayer Inc. Canada. In these positions Dan oversaw aspects of a number of acquisitions, in- and out-licensing deals and divestitures, among them the acquisitions of Schering AG and Dyrevo AG, the divestiture of Bayer Diagnostics and the out-licensing of the liquid tumor business. Dan received his BA in Economics from UPenn and his MBA from UC Berkeley.

Perry Karsen
Chief Operations Officer

Perry A. Karsen currently serves as Chief Operations Officer at Celgene Corporation. Most recently, Mr. Karsen served as President and Chief Executive Officer at Pearl Therapeutics. 2004-2009, Mr. Karsen was Senior Vice President and Head of Worldwide Business Development at Celgene and was also responsible for emerging businesses as President, Asia/Pacific Region. Previously, he was Senior Vice President, Business Development at Human Genome Sciences. Earlier in his career, he held positions including Vice President, Strategic Business Analysis and Development, Bristol-Myers Squibb; Senior Vice President Marketing and Sales, Zimmer, Inc.; Director, Business Development and Representative Director, Japan, at Genentech and various domestic and international roles with Abbott Laboratories. Additionally, Mr. Karsen was a General Partner at Pequot Ventures responsible for early and late stage investments in biotechnology and medical devices.

Mr. Karsen serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO); a member of the Board of Directors of BayBio; and a member of the Board of Directors for the Life Sciences Foundation.

Perry has a Masters of Management degree from Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management, a Masters in Teaching of Biology from Duke University, and a B.S. in Biological Sciences from the University of Illinois, Urbana.

Kristin C. Peck
Executive Vice President Worldwide Business Development & Innovation
Pfizer Inc.

Kristin Peck is Executive Vice President, Worldwide Business Development and Innovation for Pfizer Inc. and a member of Pfizer's Executive Leadership Team. In this role, Ms. Peck is responsible for Pfizer's merger and acquisition, licensing, venture capital, alliance management and innovative business model activities.

In her Business Development role over the last year, Ms. Peck has overseen the completion of numerous deals, including ones involving King Pharmaceuticals, FoldRx, Biocon and Teuto. She also led the team that launched a first-of-its-kind, enterprise-wide, web-based platform focused on innovation to harness the creative energies and insights of Pfizer colleagues to drive continued growth at Pfizer.

Ms. Peck joined Pfizer in 2004 in a Strategy role, and later became Senior Vice President of Worldwide Strategy and Innovation. Ms. Peck's Strategy team led the development of Pfizer's current strategies and global operating model review process. With Pfizer's acquisition of Wyeth in 2009, she led the global integration, focusing on ensuring the combined companies successfully delivered the promised value for patients, customers, shareholders and other stakeholders. She subsequently took on responsibility for Business Development, becoming Senior Vice President, Worldwide Business Development, Strategy and Innovation.

Prior to joining Pfizer, Ms. Peck was a principal with the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), focusing on strategy and merger-related issues in the pharmaceutical and financial services industries. Before BCG, Ms. Peck worked in private equity and real estate finance at Prudential, The O'Connor Group and J.P. Morgan. Ms. Peck holds a bachelor's degree from Georgetown University and an M.B.A. from Columbia Business School. Ms. Peck and her husband live in Connecticut with their two children and dogs.

Stuart Smith
Co-Head and Managing Director of Healthcare Investment Banking
Credit Suisse

Stuart F. Smith is a Managing Director of Credit Suisse and Co-Head of Health Carewithin the Investment Banking Department, based in New York.

Prior to joining Credit Suisse First Boston in 1999, Mr. Smith was a Managing Director of Alex. Brown & Sons and its successor firms. He has been involved in structuring numerous M&A transactions as well as effecting financings for clients across all sectors of the health care industry including: Express Scripts, Genzyme, IDX, King Pharmaceuticals and Lab Corp.

Mr. Smith received an M.B.A. from the Columbia Business School, a J.D. from the University of Connecticut School of Law and a B.S. from Franklin and Marshall College.

Sean Traynor
General Partner
Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe

Mr. Traynor is a member of the Management Committee, having joined WCAS in 1999. He focuses on investments in the healthcare industry. Prior to joining WCAS, he worked in the healthcare and insurance investment banking groups at BT Alex. Brown. Mr. Traynor spent three years with Coopers & Lybrand. He earned a bachelor's degree from Villanova University in 1991 and an M.B.A. from the Wharton School of Business in 1996.