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Director - Business Development

Variant Bio

Variant Bio

Sales & Business Development
Seattle, WA, USA
Posted on Wednesday, December 13, 2023

Variant Bio is a Seattle-based biotechnology company leveraging the power of human genetic diversity to develop life-saving therapies. To achieve this goal, we are studying the genes of people who are outliers for medically relevant traits, then translating insights from this research into the discovery and development of new therapeutics.

Variant Bio closed a $105mm Series B financing to support the rapid advancement of the company’s research and development work. Our investors include Lux Capital, Alta Partners, General Catalyst, SoftBank Vision Fund, Cercano Management and Casdin Capital, among others. Our growing team of geneticists, medical researchers, biologists, and drug hunters is working to advance multiple projects through target validation, lead optimization, and other discovery and development efforts in relentless pursuit of bringing life-saving therapies to patients.

Ethics is at the foundation of everything we do at Variant Bio. Our genomic research studies are co-designed with local partners around the world with input from communities. In addition, we are committed to sharing tangible benefits with research partners and communities through our unique Benefit-sharing Program and Affordable Medicines Pledge.

Variant Bio is an equal opportunity employer that guarantees a work environment that respects and values diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.

Job Description

We are looking for an experienced business development professional to significantly expand the scope and scale of our collaborations to advance our drug discovery programs. The ideal candidate is a creative thinker with experience sourcing opportunities with biotech and pharma partners and leading negotiations of complex legal agreements. It is important that the candidate is able to collaboratively work with a team of scientists, has alignment with our ethical principles, and is an extremely strong communicator. Experience with in-licensing and out-licensing of drug discovery programs is critical. Experience with genomic studies is a benefit, but not required.

This role will report directly to the Chief Business Officer and work closely with the company’s leadership team on setting business strategy and sourcing and executing business development activities.


  • Through our global genomic research efforts, we have developed a differentiated therapeutic pipeline built on unique knowledge of targets with human genetic evidence. The successful candidate will have the ability to source and execute value-creating transactions that build on this internal work, including in-licensing and out-licensing as well as targeted research & development collaborations that will enable us to realize our full potential as an industry leader.
  • Effectively build and maintain relationships with pharma, biotech and other potential collaboration partners.
  • Source, evaluate, complete due diligence, value, negotiate and execute partnerships with a strong attention to detail.
  • Create valuation models for assets and related transaction frameworks utilizing rNPV, benchmarking and similar methodologies to support compelling business cases for consideration by key stakeholders.
  • Articulate and communicate Variant Bio’s business and technical vision to the biotech and pharma communities.
  • Business travel will be required.


  • An experienced biotech business development professional - 10+ years of experience in biotech or pharma and 5+ years in business development and licensing, with a clear track record of sourcing, negotiating and executing in-licensing and out-licensing partnerships with biotech and pharma companies.
  • Deal sourcing and execution skills - experience in due diligence, analysis, deal structuring, valuation, and negotiating definitive documentation (as evidenced by comprehensive deal sheet), with exceptional attention to detail.
  • Sense of urgency - ability to continually push to accelerate work while maintaining the highest standards.
  • Communication skills - cross-functional experience with the ability to effectively communicate across a variety of disciplines including scientists, legal and business development professionals.
  • Scientific expertise - a strong understanding of drug discovery with the ability to effectively discuss scientific strategy with potential partners. A scientific background and PhD is a significant advantage, but not required.
  • Ability to work across multiple therapeutic areas - an agile mind that can quickly get up to speed on a variety of therapeutic areas covered by our approach and platform.
  • Rigor - must continuously operate with rigor to further the mission of the company.
  • Highest ethical standards and integrity - must have the highest integrity and ethical standards in all aspects of their work.

Compensation & Perks

  • Opportunity to be part of an early-stage startup in a rapid growth phase.
  • Competitive salary and equity package.
  • Comprehensive benefits including medical, dental, vision, short and long term disability, and life insurance.
  • 401(k) plan through Fidelity that includes up to 3% employer match and flexible investment options.
  • Flexible paid time off.
  • Choice of public transportation (Orca Card) provided by the company or subsidized parking.
  • Central Eastlake location in a brand new Alexandria building with modern facilities.

Anticipated annual base salary for this position is $175,000 - $250,000 plus up to 20% bonus and an options package, for total compensation of up to $210,000 - $300,000, plus equity options.

The annual salary range above is based on the responsibilities and qualifications listed above. Individual salary will depend on job-related knowledge, skills, and experience.

Don't meet every single requirement but are excited to join the Variant Bio team? If your past experience doesn't align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to apply anyway. You may still be the right candidate for this or other roles.