With multiple launches underway, Jazz names Renée Galá its next operations chief

As Jazz Pharmaceuticals turns the page from its long-time growth driver Xyrem and leans on a trio of newer medicines for growth, its executive roster is undergoing some changes.

The company’s president and chief operating officer Dan Swisher is hitting the exit after more than five years, Jazz said in a Tuesday release. Renée Galá, Jazz's finance chief, has been promoted to fill the role.

Galá secured the promotion after joining Jazz as chief financial officer in 2020. Before that, she held similar positions at Theravance and Grail. She also worked at Eli Lilly previously in her career.

Her new role will be effective Oct. 1. With her promotion, Jazz plans to begin a search for a new CFO.

Meanwhile, Swisher plans to stick around in a strategic adviser role through March next year.

“I am thrilled to lead our operations through our next exciting chapter,” Galá said in a statement.

The changes come as Jazz's longtime top medicine, narcolepsy drug Xyrem, succumbs to generics. After authorized generics from Hikma and Amneal launched this year, sales for Xyrem fell 41% in the second quarter to $160 million.

But on the flip side, sales for the low-sodium successor to the drug, Xywav, grew 39% to $327 million in the second quarter. In all, Jazz expects its oxybate franchise to reach sales of $2 billion by 2025.

Aside from Xywav, Jazz has been counting on Epidiolex and Rylaze to deliver sales gains. The company gained Epidiolex in its 2021 acquisition of GW Pharmaceuticals for $7.2 billion, and the epilepsy drug grew sales 15% to $202 million in the second quarter.

As for Rylaze, the oncology offering generated more than $100 million during the period, good for 39% growth. The medicine won its original FDA approval in 2021 and is part of an oncology franchise that Jazz expects to generate $1 billion this year.

Still, Jazz isn't focused solely on its marketed offerings. At this year’s BIO International Convention, CEO Bruce Cozadd told Fierce Biotech that Jazz was eyeing “a variety of potential transactions” in neurology and oncology.