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bluebird bio Announces Management Appointments

- Susanna High named chief operating officer –

- Andrew Obenshain named head of Europe

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 2, 2016-- bluebird bio, Inc. (Nasdaq: BLUE), a clinical-stage company committed to developing potentially transformative gene therapies for severe genetic diseases and T cell-based immunotherapies for cancer, today announced two new appointments as part of the company’s ongoing preparation for commercial readiness. Susanna High was named chief operating officer and Andrew Obenshain was named senior vice president and head of Europe.

“I’m thrilled to welcome Susanna and Andrew to bluebird bio,” said Nick Leschly, chief bluebird. “As bluebird becomes more operationally complex and prepares for commercialization in Europe and the U.S., they will be key to rounding out our growing leadership reach and depth to meet the challenge. Both Susanna and Andrew have not only very relevant experiences, but importantly they believe strongly in our mission and the value of a purpose-driven culture.”

Ms. High brings more than 20 years of strategic and operational experience in growing biopharmaceutical companies. Prior to joining bluebird, she worked at Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc., holding increasing responsibilities for company strategy, business planning, portfolio and program management, alliance management, information technology and broader organizational capability building initiatives. Prior to her time at Alnylam, Ms. High worked at Millennium Pharmaceuticals (now Takeda Oncology). Ms. High received her BA in Economics and Business Management, Financial Planning and Analysis from Università ‘Luigi Bocconi’ and her MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of TechnologySloan School of Management.

Mr. Obenshain was most recently at Shire in Paris, France where he was the General Manager of France and Benelux overseeing a portfolio including seven rare disease products. Prior to Shire, he spent eight years at Genzyme and Sanofi holding roles of increasing responsibility in business development, marketing and global commercial operations. Mr. Obenshain received his MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, and his BA in Genetics, Cell and Developmental Biology from Dartmouth College.

About bluebird bio, Inc.

With its lentiviral-based gene therapies, T cell immunotherapy expertise and gene editing capabilities, bluebird bio has built an integrated product platform with broad potential application to severe genetic diseases and cancer. bluebird bio’s gene therapy clinical programs include its Lenti-D™ product candidate, currently in a Phase 2/3 study, called the Starbeam Study, for the treatment of cerebral adrenoleukodystrophy, and its LentiGlobin™ BB305 product candidate, currently in four clinical studies for the treatment of transfusion-dependent β-thalassemia and severe sickle cell disease. bluebird bio’s oncology pipeline is built upon the company’s leadership in lentiviral gene delivery and T cell engineering, with a focus on developing novel T cell-based immunotherapies, including chimeric antigen receptor (CAR T) and T cell receptor (TCR) therapies. bluebird bio’s lead oncology program, bb2121, is an anti-BCMA CAR T program partnered with Celgene. bb2121 is currently being studied in a Phase 1 trial for the treatment of relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma. bluebird bio also has discovery research programs utilizing megaTALs/homing endonuclease gene editing technologies with the potential for use across the company’s pipeline.

bluebird bio has operations in Cambridge, Massachusetts; Seattle, Washington; and Paris, France.

Forward-Looking Statements
This release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements regarding the advancement of, and anticipated development and commercialization plans for the Company’s product candidates. Any forward-looking statements are based on management’s current expectations of future events and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially and adversely from those set forth in or implied by such forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, the risk of cessation or delay of any of the ongoing or planned clinical studies or development activities for our product candidates, the risk of a delay in the enrollment of patients in the Company’s clinical studies, the risk that the results of previously conducted studies of the Company’s product candidates will not be repeated or observed in ongoing or future studies of the Company’s product candidates, the risk that our collaborations will not continue or will not be successful, and the risk that any one or more of our product candidates will not be successfully developed and commercialized. For a discussion of other risks and uncertainties, and other important factors, any of which could cause our actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see the section entitled “Risk Factors” in our most recent annual report on Form 10-Q, as well as discussions of potential risks, uncertainties, and other important factors in our subsequent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. All information in this press release is as of the date of the release, and bluebird bio undertakes no duty to update this information unless required by law.

Source: bluebird bio, Inc.

Investors:
bluebird bio, Inc.
Manisha Pai, 617-245-2107
mpai@bluebirdbio.com
or
Media:
bluebird bio, Inc.
Elizabeth Pingpank, 617-914-8736
epingpank@bluebirdbio.com
or
Pure Communications, Inc.
Dan Budwick, 973-271-6085

Media Contacts

Stephanie Fagan

Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications

(201) 572-9581

sfagan@bluebirdbio.com

 

Catherine Falcetti

Senior Director, Corporate Communications

(339) 499-9436

cfalcetti@bluebirdbio.com

 

Investor Contact

Elizabeth Pingpank

Associate Director, Corporate Communications

(617) 914-8736

EPingpank@bluebirdbio.com