Since January 2015 Dr Roberto Gradnik is the Chief Executive Officer of Ixaltis, a start-up company founded in 2012 developing innovative treatments for genitourinary tract disorders. Dr Gradnik provided transformational leadership to EBE as its President of the Board of Directors from 2012 to 2016. Trained as a physician, Roberto Gradnik has more than 25 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sector. After holding various positions with the Knoll Group (a subsidiary of the BASF Group), including Vice-President International Marketing Cardiovascular, he joined the Serono Group in 1999 as General Manager Italy and Head of Southern European Subsidiaries. He was then appointed Executive Vice-President for Europe, in charge of all European markets, and a member of the Executive Committee. He continued in the same position for Merck Serono after the acquisition of Serono by Merck AG, later being appointed Executive Vice-President, Global Business Unit for Neurodegenerative Diseases. From January 2012 until 2014 he was Chief Executive Officer of Stallergenes. He also was President of Assobiotec (Italian biotech industry association) from 2004 to 2010.