On 1 January 2023, Philippe Draux will pass on his position of CEO of Quality Assistance to his daughter, Nathalie Draux, the company’s current COO. Philippe Draux will focus on his role as Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors. This passing of the torch occurs during a pivotal period for the analytical CRO which celebrates its 40th anniversary this year and starts its MITOSE expansion project, an investment of 20 million euros in its unique site in Donstiennes (Thuin, Belgium) allowing it to double its operational surface and create 100 new highly qualified jobs.
Philippe Draux founded and has successfully managed the company for 40 years. Industrial pharmacist by training, it was in 1982 that he created the company, then called Pharmanal. In 1992, Quality Assistance moved to Donstiennes where it evolved in a constant and controlled manner. Today it employs 245 people and continues to grow on the Thudinie Technoparc where it centralises all the analytical services required by EMA and FDA regulations for the development and marketing of innovative drugs for human use.
Nathalie Draux, an industrial pharmacist as well, began her career in the family business over 20 years ago. She has occupied various operational and strategic positions, including Chief Innovation Officer as of 2013, and Chief Operations Officer since 2016.
Philippe Draux comments on this passing of the torch: « Since her arrival, Nathalie has made her way throughout the company by working within the Laboratories, and the Quality Assurance, Training, Regulatory Affairs, Business Development, and Strategy & Innovation teams. This operational experience in the company combined with a Management Programme from the Vlerick Business School have allowed her to successfully fulfil the position of COO since 2016. I am proud of the work she has accomplished, of her career path, and to have been able to transmit this entrepreneurial spirit which we have shared on a daily basis for over 20 years. Today I have decided to hand over the reins of the company and to entrust her with the position of CEO on 1 January 2023. Personally, as Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors, I will continue to invest myself in the projects related to the growth of Quality Assistance and to ensure the proper implementation of its strategy and the satisfaction of our shareholders. »
Nathalie Draux underlines: « The life of a company passes through the stages of creation, growth, development, and inevitably transmission. Apart from the continuity of a business, transmission also represents the continuity of a particularly strong human history of a family company. I am profoundly happy to continue the story my father started writing for him, for our team, our shareholders, our clients, and our partners. »
« This passing of the torch takes place during a new global context marked by the war in Ukraine, inflation, digitalisation, as well as important societal and climate issues that make us question our points of references. We must adapt and innovate while still staying the course and pursuing our objectives to develop our capacities and skills in order to maintain our position as European leader. Nevertheless, our foundations are solid and proven – whether in terms of strategy, finance, business, clients, partners, and above all the human component. They allow me to envisage my responsibilities as CEO and the future with ambition and confidence. » Nathalie Draux concludes.
Both decorated as Officers of the Order of Merit this year by the Walloon government for the company’s, its leaders’ and its staff’s daily commitment to the benefit of public health. It is with great pride that Philippe Draux and Nathalie Draux lead Quality Assistance with the mission to accelerate people’s access to the medicines of tomorrow.