Christopher Wood: Step Up, Then Step Down
Christopher Wood, where are you? We’ve been covering the saga, I think that word can safely be used, of Genzyme’s attempted merger with New York biotech firm Bioenvision. There’s been a lot of back and forth between two of the major players, Genzyme and minority Bioenvision shareholder SCO Capital, which opposed the deal.
There’s one major player that has hardly been heard from at all: Bioenvision itself. Other than a recent press release stating two of its board members had resigned, we haven’t heard a peep from the company or Wood, its CEO and Chairman. We’ve sent e-mails to Wood and other board members (now former board members) and left voice messages for the contact on the press release—but have heard nothing in response. I’m not the only one frustrated with Bioenvision’s silence. Says individual shareholder Adam Shay, who runs the www.rejectgenzymetenderoffer.com site, “They’ve kind of been hiding behind a wall,” with a lack of “any kind of public interaction or analyst interaction.”
How, you might ask, can a company that has seen two board members resign offer no indication of what it is planning to do with those seats? How can it remain so silent in the face of the whole drama? The lack of communication from Bioenvision has almost certainly added to the confusion surrounding the matter.
We think it’s time for Wood to step up with a full accounting of what has happened, and what he sees ahead—and then to step down. Wood, in case you missed it, sold his Bioenvision shares to Genzyme for a cool $9 million. He has no stake left in the company, as far as we can tell. His own shareholders roundly rejected the merger deal he supported.
So, what credibility does he have left?