Executive committee

Composition of Galapagos NV’s executive committee

Onno van de Stolpe, CEO of Galapagos (photo)

Onno van de Stolpe founded our company in 1999 and has served as our Chief Executive Officer and a member of our board of directors from 1999 to the present. From 1998 to 1999, he was the Managing Director of Genomics at IntroGene B.V. (later Crucell N.V., which was acquired by Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc. in 2011). Prior to joining IntroGene in 1998, he was Managing Director of Molecular Probes Europe B.V. He established the European headquarters after joining Molecular Probes, Inc. in the United States. Previously, he worked for The Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency in California, where he was responsible for recruiting biotechnology and medical device companies to locate in the Netherlands. Mr. Van de Stolpe started his career as Manager of Business Development at MOGEN International NV in Leiden. He received an MSc degree from Wageningen University.

Bart Filius, CFO of Galapagos (photo)

Bart Filius, MBA has served as our Chief Financial Officer since December 2014. Prior to that, Mr. Filius worked over 13 years at Sanofi SA, where he was the Chief Financial Officer of Sanofi Europe during the last three years. Earlier at Sanofi, he was the Country Manager and Chief Financial Officer of Sanofi in the Netherlands. Before that, he was Vice President for Mergers & Acquisitions, during which time he led and completed the divestiture of various franchises. Prior to joining Sanofi, he was a strategy consultant at Arthur D. Little. Mr. Filius has an MBA degree from INSEAD and a bachelor’s degree in business from Nyenrode Business University.

Dr Piet Wigerinck, CSO of Galapagos (photo)

Piet Wigerinck, Ph.D. joined our company in April 2008 from Tibotec-Virco Comm. VA (a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc.) where he was VP Drug Discovery, Early Development and CM&C, and a member of the management board. He started his professional career as a medicinal chemist at Janssen Research Foundation in 1992. He then joined Tibotec Group NV in 1998, where, under his leadership, TMC114 (PrezistaTM) and TMC435 (OlysioTM) were selected and moved forward into clinical trials. Dr. Wigerinck also played a key role in Tibotec’s expansion into novel diseases such as Hepatitis C and advanced several compounds into Phase 1 and Phase 2 clinical trials. He brings over 25 years of research and development experience from both large pharmaceutical companies and biotechnology companies to our company. Dr. Wigerinck holds a Ph.D. from the K.U. Leuven and is inventor on more than 25 patent applications.

Dr Andre Hoekema, Senior Vice President Corporate Development (photo)

Andre Hoekema, Ph.D. is responsible for M&A, licensing and intellectual property at Galapagos. He had the lead in rolling out our pharmaceutical alliance strategy since its start in 2006, and is the architect of our collaboration with AbbVie for CF. Dr. Hoekema joined our company in March 2005 from Invitrogen Corporation, where he was Managing Director of Corporate Development Europe, overseeing licensing and M&A for Invitrogen Europe. He brings 30 years of biotech experience from positions at Molecular Probes Europe B.V. (Managing Director of the European office), Crucell N.V. (Director of Business Development and Intellectual Property), Koninklijke DSM N.V., MOGEN International N.V. (Research and Project Management), and Genentech, Inc. (postdoctoral researcher). Dr. Hoekema studied Chemistry and holds a Ph.D. from Leiden University. During his Ph.D. work, he invented the binary vector system for the genetic modification of plants, which he published in Nature in 1983; this has since then become the global standard in the field of agricultural biotech. He is the author of more than 30 peer-reviewed scientific papers, and an inventor of over 20 series of patent applications, resulting in 15 patents issued in the United States. Dr. Hoekema currently also serves as a member of the supervisory board of Mimetas B.V. and has previously served as a member of the supervisory board of VitalNext B.V.

Walid Abi-Saab, MD started his job as CMO at Galapagos in March 2017. Dr. Abi-Saab drives Galapagos' overall medical strategy and is responsible for late stage clinical development and operations, medical and regulatory affairs, and safety. Before, Dr. Abi-Saab worked at Shire Pharmaceuticals where he held various clinical development leadership roles, most recently as Group Vice President, Global Clinical Development - Therapeutic Area Head, Gastro-intestinal, Endocrinology and Metabolism. Prior to that, he led clinical development activities at Novartis, Abbott Laboratories and Pfizer, addressing a wide range of therapeutic areas and leading teams throughout the clinical development process. Under his leadership, more than 30 molecules have advanced through clinical development leading to several approvals in the US, EU and Canada. Prior to his pharma roles, Dr. Abi-Saab was Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Neurosurgery at Yale University Medical School, where he headed their Schizophrenia Research at the Clinical Neuroscience Research Unit and the Neurosurgery Epilepsy Microdialysis Research Program. Dr. Abi-Saab holds an MD degree from Université Saint Joseph in Beirut, Lebanon.

About the executive committee of Galapagos NV

The tasks of the executive committee include the following matters: the research, identification and development of strategic possibilities and proposals which may contribute to our development in general, the drafting and development of policy guidelines to be approved by our board of directors, management of the group through, among other things, the implementation of policy guidelines, the supervision of the actual performance of the business compared to its strategic goals, plans and budgets, and the support of the CEO with the day-to-day management of Galapagos.

On 31 December 2016, the executive committee consisted of four people: Mr. Van de Stolpe (CEO, also executive director), Mr. Bart Filius (CFO), Dr. Piet Wigerinck (CSO) and Dr. Andre Hoekema (Senior Vice President, Corporate Development).

On 17 January 2017, we announced the appointment of Dr. Walid Abi-Saab as Chief Medical Officer and member of the executive committee, beginning on 1 March 2017.

The executive committee meets regularly, and in principle once per month.

Audit committee

The role of the audit committee is to follow up on financial reporting and verification of financial data, safeguard the integrity of our financial reporting, verify and follow up on the internal control mechanisms, evaluate and verify the effectiveness of the risk assessment systems, follow up on the internal and external audit activities, review, monitor and evaluate the independence and performance of the external auditor and inform the board on the results of the statutory audit.

At the end of 2016, the audit committee consisted of the following three directors: Dr. Cautreels (chairman), Dr. Van Barlingen and Mr. Rowe. All members of the audit committee are non-executive directors, the majority of whom are independent within the meaning of article 526ter of the Belgian Companies Code. The chairman is an independent non-executive director. All members of the audit committee have extensive experience in the life sciences industry. The chairman has relevant expertise in financial matters (including general accounting and financial reporting) and in matters of audit, internal control and risk control. The other members have extensive experience in these matters as well.

In 2016, the audit committee held seven meetings, in which it dealt with matters pertaining to audit review, risk management, monitoring financial reporting, the implementation of Sarbanes-Oxley compliant internal and external audit systems and the effects of the Belgian and European audit reform legislation. The audit committee acts as a collegial body. The overall attendance at the audit committee meetings in 2016 was 90%. Some of the meetings were attended by the statutory auditor.

Nomination and remuneration committee

The nomination and remuneration committee’s role is twofold: providing recommendations to the board of directors regarding the remuneration policy of Galapagos and the remuneration of directors and members of the executive committee, and selecting the appropriate candidates and making recommendations to the board of directors in relation to the appointment of directors and members of the executive committee.

At the end of 2016, the nomination and remuneration committee consisted of the following three non-executive directors: Dr. Parekh (chairman), Dr. Cautreels and Ms. Bosley, the majority of whom are independent directors. The committee has the necessary expertise in the area of remuneration policy.

The nomination and remuneration committee meets at least twice per year. In 2016, the nomination and remuneration committee held two meetings, dealing with matters pertaining to grants of warrants and bonuses, the nomination of our Chief Medical Officer and salary increases. The nomination and remuneration committee acts as a collegial body. The overall attendance rate at the nomination and remuneration committee meetings in 2016 was 100%. The CEO attended the meetings of this committee when the remuneration of the other members of the executive committee was discussed.

Composition of board committees (excluding the executive committee)


Audit committee

Nomination and remuneration committee

denotes committee membership


denotes committee chairmanship


denotes qualification as an independent director within the meaning of article 526ter of the Belgian Companies Code

Onno van de Stolpe



Raj Parekh



Harrold van Barlingen


Werner Cautreels1


Howard Rowe1


Katrine Bosley1


Christine Mummery1



Mary Kerr1