Category Archives: Adc Technology

Inspirey’s Interview with Dr. Siegall Shows Inspiration Behind Leading Biotech Company

The interview “Dr. Siegall—CEO, Seattle Genetics” published by Inspirey, details the inspiration behind the biotech company, Seattle Genetics.

The company was co-founded by Dr. Siegall in 1998 and became public in 2001. Dr. Siegall is still the President and CEO of Seattle Genetics. He was inspired to create the biotech company after becoming fascinated in the power of technology to overcome disease. He studied zoology at the University of Maryland where he first became intrigued by cancer patient.

He also had to watch the brutal cancer treatment of a family member, whose treatment was so harsh that they developed severe anemia and nearly died from the side effects of chemotherapy. Dr. Siegall saw that the only options available to cancer patients was either the harsh chemotherapy with detrimental side effects or radical surgery and amputation. He was inspired to find another way.

Dr. Siegall was also encouraged to start his own company after needed more autonomy in his research projects. After gaining his doctorate in genetics from George Washington Unviersity, he went to work for companies like the National Cancer Institute and the Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute. After watching his research and patents gain $80 million in profit without seeing any of that money aside from his paycheck, he decided he needed to begin his own company. He also wanted the recognition for his hard work.

Seattle Genetics became profitable ten years after going public. They make money by selling the first FDA approved ADC. Their drug ADCetris is available in 65 companies and they have exclusivity on the patent. They also make money through production partnerships and licensing technologies. Though getting a drug approved by the FDA is both an intense and expensive process, the drug is capable of earning substantial profits.

Despite difficulties in the early years, Dr. Siegall believes the success of the company is due to hard work and selling strategies. The company hired a talented sales group in the early 2000’s that allowed them to gain 7 and 8 figure contracts.

Dr. Siegall has grown Seattle Genetics from a small biotech startup to a leader in the cancer treatment pharmaceuticals. They have become the leader in antibody-drug conjugates and have become a global brand that is approved in 65 countries.