Home » Open Orphan (ORPH) » Open Orphan #ORPH – Appointment of new Director

Open Orphan #ORPH – Appointment of new Director

Open Orphan , the rapidly growing specialist CRO pharmaceutical services company which has a focus on orphan drugs and is a world leader in the provision of virology and vaccine challenge study services , is pleased to announce, further to its announcement of 13 February 2020, the appointment to the board of Leo Toole as Chief Financial Officer.

Leo Toole brings over 20 years’ experience in senior finance roles in Pharmaceuticals, Medical Technology and FMCG sectors. He has held senior finance positions at Procter and Gamble, ResMed and Sublimity Therapeutics. Through positions in multinational companies across Europe and in the venture capital space in the UK and Ireland, he has extensive experience in building finance teams, corporate development, equity and debt financing, public markets, and mergers and acquisitions. Leo is a Business graduate of Trinity College Dublin, Ireland and HEC Liège, Belgium. He also holds an MBA with Distinction from INSEAD in France and Singapore. 

Cathal Friel, Executive Chairman of Open Orphan commented: “We are delighted to welcome Leo Toole to the board following the successful completion of his regulatory due diligence checks. Leo brings with him a wealth of experience which will be invaluable to us at what is an exciting time for Open Orphan as we steer the company to profitability in the coming months and increasing deal flow and revenue in the year ahead, he is a great addition to the board. These are exciting times for Open Orphan because following the acquisition of hVIVO we are now the world leader in the provision of viral challenge study models and, as such, we are ideally positioned to provide assistance and help to vaccine manufacturers and governments around the world to successfully deal with and in the search for solutions to the Coronavirus outbreak.”

The following additional information is provided in accordance with paragraph (g) of Schedule Two to the AIM Rules for Companies and paragraph (g) of Schedule Two of the Euronext Growth Rules for Companies:

Full Name: Leo Patrick Toole

Age: 46

Current directorships / partnerships

Directorships / partnerships within the last five years

Meadow Landscape Design Limited

Sublimity Therapeutics Holdco Limited

Venn Life Sciences (NI) Ltd

Arvonage Limited


Leo Toole does not hold any shares or options in the Company.

There is no further information to be disclosed in relation to Leo Toole’s appointment pursuant to AIM Rule 17, paragraph (g) of Schedule Two of the AIM Rules for Companies or paragraph (g) of Schedule Two of the Euronext Growth Rules for Companies.


For further information please contact

Open Orphan plc

Cathal Friel, Executive Chairman 

Trevor Phillips, Chief Executive Officer


+353 (0)1 644 0007

+44 (0)20 7347 5350

Arden Partners plc (Nominated Adviser and Joint Broker)

John Llewellyn-Lloyd / Benjamin Cryer

+44 (0)20 7614 5900

Davy (Euronext Growth Adviser and Joint Broker)

Anthony Farrell

+353 (0)1 679 6363

Camarco (Financial PR)

Tom Huddart / Daniel Sherwen

+44 (0)20 3757 4980

Notes to Editors:

Open Orphan  is a rapidly growing specialist CRO pharmaceutical services company which has a focus on orphan drugs and is a world leader in the provision of virology and vaccine challenge study services  and viral laboratory services. It has Europe’s only 24-bedroom quarantine clinic with onsite virology lab in Queen Mary’s Hospital London. hVIVO  supports product development for customers developing antivirals, vaccines and respiratory therapeutics, all particularly relevant and topical in the environment of heightened awareness of the Coronavirus in 2020. The company also has a leading portfolio of 8 viral challenge study models which are: 2 FLU, 2 RSV, 1 HRV, 1 Asthma, 1 cough and 1 COPD viral challenge models.   No other company in the world has such a portfolio, with only two competitors globally having 1 challenge study model each.  

Open Orphan comprises of two commercial specialist CRO services businesses (Venn and hVIVO) and is developing an early stage orphan drug genomics data platform business. This platform captures valuable genetic data from patient populations with specific diseases with designated orphan drug status and incorporating AI tools. In June 2019,   Open Orphan acquired AIM-listed Venn Life Sciences Holdings plc in   a reverse take-over and in January 2020 it completed the merger with hVIVO plc. Venn, as an integrated drug development consultancy, offers CMC (c hemistry, manufacturing and controls) , preclinical, phase I & II clinical trials design and execution. The merger with hVIVO created a European full pharma services company broadening the Company’s customer base and with complementary specialist CRO services, widened the range of the Company’s service offerings.

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