Wacker Biosolutions appoints Susanne Leonhartsberger as president

German-based ingredients company Wacker Biosolutions has confirmed that Dr. Susanne Leonhartsberger takes over as its president with immediate effect, succeeding Dr. Gerhard Schmid who is set to retire.

As the firm noted, Dr. Leonhartsberger, 48, was previously managing director of Wacker Biotech and, as head of the company’s biopharma business line, she was responsible for biologics business.

Using advanced biotech processes, the biosolutions division provides tailored, innovative solutions and products to the life-science sector – including pharmaceutical proteins, cyclodextrins and fermentation-generated cysteine. Its portfolio is complemented by catalog chemicals, such as acetylacetone and high-quality polyvinyl acetate solid resins. It focuses on producing customised solutions for growth areas, such as food ingredients including confectionery items flavour masking solution for gummies, as well as delivering ingredients solutions for bakery and icing applications.

Dr. Leonhartsberger studied biology at Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich, where she wrote her doctorate on the gene regulation activities and biochemistry of bacteria.

She first joined Roche Diagnostics, where she worked in protein production. In 2001, she moved to Wacker’s Corporate R&D department. After various positions at Wacker Biotech’s site in Jena and at the Corporate Development department in Munich, she moved to Adrian (USA) in 2014. There, she headed Wacker Biosolutions’ North and Central America business until 2017. On her return to Germany, she became managing director of Wacker Biotech and, as head of the biopharma business line, was responsible for biologics contract- manufacturing at the company.

From the start of this month, Dr. Guido Seidel, currently second managing director of Wacker Biotech, will succeed Dr. Leonhartsberger as head of Wacker Chemie AG. Effective the same date, Melanie Käsmarker becomes second managing director of Wacker Biotech. Currently, Melanie Käsmarker heads the Global Finance & Administration unit for the biopharma business line and, at the same time, is site manager at the firm’s biotech’s site in Halle, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the company.

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