We are unlocking the
therapeutic potential of plants.

Meet our Multidisciplinary Team

Willow Biosciences was founded in 2019 through the merger of BIOCAN Technologies: a team of experienced executives from Calgary and researchers from the University of British Columbia, and Epimeron: a team of researchers from the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada.

Willow Biosciences is a synthetic biology company, rooted in innovative cannabinoid production.

Our multidisciplinary team of world-leading discovery biologists, biochemists and geneticists is dedicated to harnessing the therapeutic potential of plants. We provide pure, consistent, and cost-effective production processes for our pharmaceutical partners developing treatments for a wide array of medical conditions, from PTSD to Parkinson’s.

We are pioneers in the biotechnology sector and have developed the only fully-integrated synthetic biology solution for opiate biosynthesis. We are now leveraging our unique design-build process–and our proven track record–to the biosynthesis of cannabinoids.

Management

Trevor Peters

President and Chief Executive Officer and Director

Mr. Peters is an experienced executive having co-founded four start-up companies in the past 15 years. Mr. Peters has raised over $1.0 billion in equity and debt financings at various stages of corporate development and has been integral to successful transactions totalling over $4.0 billion on sale. Mr. Peters previously was Chief Financial Officer at Caracal Energy Inc., which sold to Glencore plc in 2014 for $1.8 billion.

Travis Doupe

Chief Financial Officer

Mr. Doupe has over 18 years’ experience in financial leadership roles, principally in the international oil and gas industry, during which time he provided corporate strategic direction while overseeing all aspects of financial operations, including budgeting and planning, treasury, accounting, tax, reporting and investor relation functions. Over half of Mr. Doupe’s 18 years of financial experience has been in various Chief Financial Officer roles, principally in publicly listed companies. Mr. Doupe is the Treasurer and a member of the Board of Directors of the Canada Council for the Americas – Alberta and holds a CA-CPA designation and a Bachelor of Management degree from the University of Calgary.

Dr. Peter Facchini

Chief Scientific Officer

Dr. Facchini has been Professor of Plant Biochemistry in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Calgary since 1995. Dr. Facchini is the Canada Research Chair in Plant Metabolic Processes Biotechnology and he received the C.D. Nelson Award from the Canadian Society of Plant Physiologists as the outstanding young plant biologist in Canada. Dr. Facchini has published over 150 research papers and scholarly articles in high-impact journals such as Nature Chemical Biology, Plant Cell, Plant Journal and the Journal of Biological Chemistry. Dr. Facchini received a PhD from the University of Toronto in 1991 and conducted postdoctoral research at the University of Kentucky and the Université de Montréal.

Dr. Chris Savile

Vice President, Commercial Operations

Dr. Savile has 13 years’ experience in science, business development, and commercial operations roles in biotech. He is a highly experienced chemist, high throughput (HTP) assay scientist and protein engineer focused on the scale up and commercialization of industrial processes for pharma and biotech. Dr Savile has acted as a technical leader and commercial program manager on several programs that led to commercial manufacturing processes.  He received his PhD from McGill University in 2005.

Jerry Ericsson

Vice President, Operations

Mr. Ericsson is an experienced clean-tech executive responsible for raising more than $20.0 million to commercialize thermochemical technologies for the production of biofuels and advanced materials. Mr. Ericsson has more than 15 years of experience in research and development of novel technologies in forestry and agricultural industries and eight years’ experience in integrated pest management (IPM) research in greenhouse and field crops. Mr. Ericsson has authored or co-authored three patents and several peer-reviewed papers in international journals, and has an MSc in Plant Science from the University of British Columbia.

Dr. Jillian Hagel

Vice President, Applied Science

Dr. Hagel has over 17 years’ experience in medicinal plant biochemistry. Dr. Hagel has co-authored over 35 peer-reviewed publications in high-ranking journals such as Nature Chemical Biology, Nature Communications and Plant Cell, presented internationally and been the recipient of multiple academic awards. Dr. Hagel is the co-inventor on numerous patent applications and received a PhD in 2010 from the University of Calgary.

Dr. Mathias Schuetz

Vice President, Research and Development

Dr. Schuetz is an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Botany at the University of British Columbia, and a researcher and plant molecular biologist with extensive expertise in plant genetics and cannabis plant science. Dr. Schuetz has over 16 years of research experience and he is the author of numerous peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Schuetz has received numerous citations and awards for research excellence and received his PhD in 2009 from Simon Fraser University.

Troy Talkkari

Vice President, Corporate Development

Mr. Talkkari has over 12 years’ experience in the finance industry and was most recently a Director of Institutional Equity Sales at GMP FirstEnergy. In his tenure in the Investment Banking group he was a part of 66 M&A transactions totalling over $22 billion in value. As both a member of the Investment Banking and Sales & Trading teams he was a part of 833 financings, including 279 as the lead dealer, totalling over $131 billion of capital raised. Mr. Talkkari hold a CFA designation and Bachelor of Commerce in Finance from the University of British Columbia.

Board of Directors

Dr. Joseph Tucker

Executive Chairman

Dr. Tucker possesses extensive senior leadership experience, having served as Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Vice President of multiple public and private biotech companies. He has taken companies from incorporation through to acquisition, out-licensing and stock market listing. Dr. Tucker holds more than 20 issued or pending patents and is a member of the Board of Directors of BioAlberta. Dr. Tucker received a PhD in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology from the University of Calgary.

Al Foreman

Director

Mr. Foreman has over 20 years of professional experience in private equity, corporate finance, and financial technology. Mr. Foreman is currently a Partner and the Chief Investment Officer of Tuatara Capital, L.P. Prior to co-founding Tuatara Al was a Managing Director at Highbridge Principal Strategies, and earlier was a Managing Director at J.P. Morgan in the Financial Sponsors Group and Private Equity Fund Services business. Previously, Al held executive roles at Vitech Systems Group and Virtual Growth, and he began his career at Citigroup. Mr. Foreman earned a B.S. in Finance from the University of Connecticut and a dual J.D./MBA from Arizona State University.

Dr. Peter Seufer-Wasserthal

Director

Dr. Seufer-Wasserthal has more than 25 years’ experience in the technology and biotechnology sector. Dr. Seufer-Wasserthal is currently Chief Commercial Officer of Origenis GmbH and previously served as Vice President, Business Development for Intrexon Corporation, responsible for business development in Europe and Asia for four years. Dr. Seufer-Wasserthal received his PhD from the Technical University of Graz.

Sadiq H. Lalani

Director

Mr. Lalani has been Chief Financial Officer of Kelt Exploration Ltd. since October 2012 and Vice President since October 2017. Before that, Mr. Lalani was Chief Financial Officer & Vice President, Finance of Celtic Exploration Ltd. from October 2002 to February 2013. He has over 25 years’ experience in leadership positions. Mr. Lalani holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Calgary.

Donald Archibald

Director

Mr. Archibald is an independent businessman and the Executive Chairman of Cequence Energy Ltd. Mr. Archibald was a former director and audit committee member of numerous public issuers, including Spartan Energy Corp. from December 2013 to May 2018 when it was acquired for approximately $1.4 billion by Vermilion Energy Inc. and Spartan Oil Corp. from June 2011 to January 2013 when it completed a business combination with Bonterra Energy Corp. for a total transaction value of approximately $480 million. Mr. Archibald has held senior executive positions with a number of public and private issuers, including roles as President of Cypress Energy Corp., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Cyries Energy Inc. and President and Chief Executive Officer of Cequel Energy Inc. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce Degree and a Masters of Business Administration.

Dr. Fotiz Kalantzis

Director

Dr. Kalantzis has been co-founder of several public companies and has over 25 years’ experience in oil and gas exploration and development in technical and leadership positions. Dr. Kalantzis has been instrumental in a number of significant transactions including in his capacity as a senior officer with Spartan Energy Corp. from December 2013 to May 2018, Spartan Oil Corp. from June 2011 to January 2013, Spartan Exploration Ltd. (public) from September 2010 to June 2011 and Spartan Exploration Ltd. (private) from January 2008 to September 2010. Dr. Kalantzis holds an MSc from the University of Saskatchewan and a PhD from the University of Alberta and has published and presented many papers in international journals and conferences.

Sony Gill

Corporate Secretary

Mr. Gill is a partner at Stikeman Elliot LLP, a national law firm. Mr. Gill has dealt with all aspects of a public and private company’s creation, growth, restructuring and value maximization. Mr. Gill has extensive experience in the negotiation, structuring and consummation of a broad range of corporate finance, securities and mergers and acquisitions transactions. He serves on the board of directors of, and acts as corporate secretary to, numerous public and private companies. Mr. Gill is recognized in Chambers Canada as a leader in Corporate Commercial – Alberta. He also appears in the Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory as a leading lawyer in the area of Corporate Mid-Market, and as a leading lawyer in the current edition of Who’s Who Legal: Energy. In 2011, he was named among Lexpert magazine’s Rising Stars: Leading Lawyers Under 40.

Trevor Peters

President and Chief Executive Officer and Director

Mr. Peters is an experienced executive having co-founded four start-up companies in the past 15 years. Mr. Peters has raised over $1.0 billion in equity and debt financings at various stages of corporate development and has been integral to successful transactions totalling over $4.0 billion on sale. Mr. Peters previously was Chief Financial Officer at Caracal Energy Inc., which sold to Glencore plc in 2014 for $1.8 billion.

Work at Willow

At Willow our business is to enable the commercialization of high-value bioproducts. We achieve this by making and deploying key discoveries in plant genomics and pathway biochemistry. Newly discovered genetic elements and biochemical mechanisms are transferred or translated into an appropriate industrial host organism, and optimized for maximum yield.

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Willow Biosciences

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