Open Orphan appoints Yamin Khan as new chief executive

Cathal Friel to continue in executive chairman role under new management structure

Irish-headquartered Open Orphan has appointed a new chief executive, with Yamin "Mo" Khan stepping into the role immediately.

Mr Khan has more than 25 years of global clinical research experience across clinical operations, project management, business development and executive management functions. He held a number of senior roles at Pharm-Olam International, including executive vice-president of clinical development and global director of clinical operations. Prior to this he worked at Innovex and Quintiles CRO (IQVIA).

Mr Khan joined the board of Open Orphan as a non-executive director in October 2021, chairing both the audit and risk, and nomination committees. Although he will step down from his chair role on the committees, Mr Khan will remain on the committees until the company fills the vacant positions within the next six months.

He will also step down from the remuneration committee immediately, with independent non-executive director Elaine Sullivan taking on the chair position for the audit and risk committee in the interim and for the nomination committee on a full-time basis.


“These are exciting times for Open Orphan and its subsidiaries, and I look forward to working closely with [executive chairman Cathal Friel] and the team as we go forward, helping to drive further growth for the company.”

Mr Friel will continue in his role under the new management structure. He welcomed Mr Khan’s appointment. “In the few short months since he joined us, Mo has shared with us his invaluable experience and knowledge of the contract research organisation [CRO] industry to the benefit of the company. With substantial growth across the global infectious and respiratory disease market, the company has experienced a significant increase in human challenge study contract negotiations,” he said.

“The appointment of Mo as CEO adds considerable CRO experience and expertise to our contract negotiations and will allow me to focus my attention on other areas of the business to deliver shareholder value and it is my intention to remain very hands on and involved in the business as we go forward. I look forward to working closely with Mo and the team in the weeks and months ahead.”

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien is an Irish Times business and technology journalist