We have some exciting news here in the MSC team. Co-founder Tobias Thornblad is handing over the CEO torch to Julia Fransson. While Tobias will still be present in the role as Chair of MSC, Julia will take the helm starting early 2022.
MSC Nordics was officially founded in 2014, then under a different name and slightly different offering. Much has evolved since then; both in the Nordic biotech space as well as in the MSC team and our now broader mission of empowering biotechs to attract investment and strike partnerships.
Julia Fransson has been with the company for just over three years and has contributed to the management of the team and company since the start. Her extensive background in biotech, consulting and growth companies coupled with experience from a previous CEO role enables her to ‘hit the ground running’ and just barely shifting gears.
Julia got the opportunity to tell us more about her and her views on the future here:
What do you see as the biggest strength of our company right now?
Now, as always, I consider our team to be our strongest asset. Everyone at MSC is passionate about commercializing bioscience innovations and dedicated to always walk the extra mile for both clients and each other.
The team uniquely and successfully combines individuals with different cultural, educational and professional backgrounds. I am proud over how we leverage this to provide quality insights and materials to our clients.
I believe, and I know many clients agree, that what really sets MSC apart is our ability to analyze challenging technological aspects and translate these into strong messages for investors, shareholders, and partners.
What goal do you have for the company?
My focus will be to solidify MSC’s position as a leader when it comes to strategy, business development, valuation, and communication for Nordic life science companies. This entails leveraging both our current services as well as more recent additions, such as our valuation courses, and expanding our offering into new areas as we add new talent to our team.
MSC should be the chosen partner for all Nordic biotech companies looking to raise capital or strike strategic partnerships.
“One of my top priorities in the next year will be to strengthen MSC’s presence across the Nordics.”
What was the path you took to get to where you are today?
Since my very first chemistry class in middle school, I have had a strong interest in science, and specifically life sciences. Throughout my studies at Chalmers, first in biotechnology followed by a master’s degree in entrepreneurship and business design, I gradually realized that I wanted to keep my focus on biosciences but work closer to the business-end rather than the laboratory.
After graduating, I spent five years in Stockholm at an early-stage investor in high-tech ventures first as a business development consultant followed by a role where I evaluated new investments as part of the venture team. Lastly, taking a large step out of my comfort zone, I took a position to head up a construction robotics company. Despite it being challenging and developing to work in a field of technology and industry where I needed to learn everything from scratch, I gradually longed to move closer to home, both geographically and in terms of subject matter. This prompted me joining MSC Nordics and returning to Gothenburg, which has now been my home over the last three years.
Why did you want to become CEO of this company?
The easy answer is, I can’t think of a better company to work for. I feel honored to get the opportunity to keep building on the solid foundation that Tobias and Björn have established and lead the MSC forward.
We have a client base that inspires and challenges us to always think smarter; and an everchanging industry that requires constant evolvement together with our clients to continue to keep them competitive. Further, we have a warm and welcoming company culture and a team with a common motivator to be part of bringing new medicines and medical innovations to patients in need.
What do you hope to accomplish within the next year?
One of my top priorities in the next year will be to strengthen MSC‘s presence across the Nordics. Currently, MSC is well-known within the Swedish life science landscape and I want to work towards building our brand in all the Nordic countries.
A second priority is to expand the team, so clients can already now look forward to meeting several new highly talented and dedicated MSC team members in the coming year.
What makes you excited about Mondays?
When I’m not at work you can find me spending time with my family and friends. I have two young sons and enjoy exploring the world with them. Right now I’m looking forward to the time when the pandemic is behind us so that we can go to more places than our local forest and playground!
Although I love my kids and the fast-paced chaos that they’ve brought into my life, it’s always nice to step into the calm of our office on Monday mornings knowing that even our most demanding clients will have miles more patience and reasonable requirements than the two bosses at home. I am privileged to be able to combine both worlds!
Tobias Thornblad, co-founder of MSC, will continue to be present in the Nordic biotech industry but divide his focus on a number of different avenues. Tobias will transition to serve as the Chair of the Board for MSC; and, continue as the Chair of BioStock, a leading news outlet for the Scandinavian life science industry.
Björn Carlsson, co-founder of MSC, will continue to support the company through an advisory role as part of the company’s Board.