our team

Gordana Gregurić Čičak, MD Chief Executive Officer

Gordana joined the CRO industry in 1998 in the role of Medical Research Associate and since then has gained over 20 years of working experience in the international clinical research arena.

Gordana has excelled in both Clinical Project Management and Senior Management positions within leading Global (Ingenix, i3 research) and Regional/International CRO companies (SAR Monitoring Services, Ergomed), including managing Regional and Country business responsibilities.

She was a Board Member of the Ingenix Pharmaceutical Services (i3 research) in Croatia. In 2006 she became the Co-founder and CEO of Optimapharm.

Gordana graduated from the Medical School, University of Zagreb in 1995. In 2001, she completed postgraduate studies in Clinical Pharmacology with Toxicology.

Christophe Lyssens, MSc Vice President Clinical Operations

Christophe holds a Master of Science in Biology from the University of Antwerp (Belgium). After working on University Research projects, Christophe started his career in the pharma industry in 2003.

He worked in different positions of increasing responsibility at a CRO, global Pharma and Biotech company.

Christophe then joined a Global CRO in 2011 as senior Clinical Vendor Manager EMEA and was responsible for the selection, contracting, quality and performance of partner CROs in the EMEA region.

In 2014 he received additional responsibility as the Country Head for Greece.

Christophe joined Optimapharm in 2015 as Vice President Clinical Operations and Country Manager for Belgium.

ANAMARIA DŽOJA HORVAT, M PHARM CLINICAL PROJECT MANAGEMENT DIRECTOR

Anamaria graduated from the School of Pharmacy and Biochemistry, University of Zagreb. She has over 16 years of international clinical research experience in the fields of Clinical Operations and Clinical Project Management covering various therapeutic areas but with special expertise in oncology, CNS and metabolic diseases.

In 2008, Anamaria joined OPTIMAPHARM’s team, obtaining different roles in the company: sCRA, Clinical Project Manager and Country Manager.

In 2018, she assumed the role of Clinical Project Management Director and is responsible for leading, managing and supporting Clinical Project Managers to ensure that projects are delivered to the highest quality.

Anamaria is actively involved in the development of various company training programs, company quality activities and internal organizational management projects.

IVAYLO YORDANOV, M PHARM CLINICAL PROJECT MANAGEMENT DIRECTOR

Ivaylo is an experienced clinical research professional with over 10 years of relevant experience in pharma and CRO industry. He graduated from the Medical University, Sofia and holds master’s degree in Pharmacy.

Since 2008 Ivaylo worked in different leading positions in a global pharmaceutical company providing leadership for the clinical development team, setting goals and responsibilities and ensuring all agreed milestones are reached.

In 2017, Ivaylo joined Optimapharm’ s team as a Country Manager and since 2019 has held the position of Clinical Project Management Director.

GABOR SZAMOSKOZI, BSc Regional Clinical Manager CEE

Gabor holds bachelor’s degrees in Emergency Medicine, International Marketing and Clinical Medicines Development.

He has over 20 years of experience working at leading biopharmaceutical companies as a clinical development professional in the execution of clinical studies in many therapeutic areas with small molecules and biological products, including exploratory phases (Phase I FIH, Phase II, POC).

Gabor worked in roles of increasing responsibility, managing complex teams, covering several countries, overseeing CRO activities.

In 2019, Gabor joined OPTIMAPHARM’s team as Regional Clinical Manager CEE. He is responsible for leading, managing and supporting the Clinical Operations Teams in the assigned countries of the CEE region.

ANA STOJKOVIĆ, DDS, MSc COUNTRY MANAGER CROATIA, SLOVENIA AND ALBANIA

Ana holds Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from the School of Dentistry, University of Zagreb, Croatia. In 2006, she also completed postgraduate studies and defended her Master Thesis in Infectology.

After 7 years of working in clinical dentistry field with adults and children, Ana joined the Medical Department at GlaxoSmithKline.

During the 6 years in GSK Ana first assumed CRA role and subsequently Clinical Research Scientist role. During that time, besides clinical operations activities Ana was also involved in the Regulatory department activities, Medical advising and Vendor management.

In 2008, Ana joined OPTIMAPHARM and during long term career in the company she contributed in different clinical roles. Ana has also gained invaluable experience in the preparation and hosting of FDA inspections. In 2012, Ana established the company yearly advanced training program OPTIMAPHARM GCP Academy. From 2018. Ana is preforming function of Country Manager.

Furthermore, Ana is EAIP certified Integrative Psychotherapist.

GORAN VESOV, MD, MSc QUALITY ASSURANCE AND TRAINING DIRECTOR

Goran has graduated at the Medical School, St. Cyril and Methodius University in Skopje in 1991 and has specialized in Pediatrics in 1999.

Goran is a professional with an extensive experience in Clinical Research, with a special focus on Quality and Training.

Goran joined the pharma industry as a Clinical Research Associate in 1999. He has worked in various leadership positions developing a successful and quality-oriented organization to execute clinical trials.

In 2019, Goran joined OPTIMAPHARM’ s team as a Quality Assurance and Training Director and is actively involved in the development and oversight of the Company’ s quality assurance and training processes, systems and standards.

Mirna Šenjug Novak, MA in Economics, CFA Chief Financial Officer

Mirna is a finance expert with extensive experience in investment banking, controlling, and finance management. Her career started in the investment banking division of Intesa Sanpaolo PBZ.

Mirna has worked on many industry and company analyses, company valuations, business planning and M&A transactions gaining valuable experience in financial modeling, strategic planning and market research.

Later, she was responsible for setting up the controlling department in a regional commercial bank, working closely with the Management and Supervisory Board on strategic planning, ALM, external audits and investor relations. In 2012 Mirna joined Optimapharm's team as Chief Financial Officer.

Igor Čičak, MA in Economics President of Supervisory Board

Igor is a banker, an investor and an entrepreneur with over 20 years of relevant experience and with a strong track record of successful investments. Igor started his banking career in 1997 with Bank Austria Group and from 2003-2005 he has performed position as the Head of Corporate banking at HVB Group in Croatia.

During the period from 2005-2006 Igor served as a Board Member of a leading regional food & retail company with sales over €6B.

From 2006-2011 Igor was a CEO of commercial regional bank.

Igor is a co-founder of Optimapharm and serves as President of the Supervisory Board since 2011.

Igor is also a founder of Provectus Capital, investment banking firm active in SEE region.

Education: London Business School - Senior Executive Programme (2014);
General Management Program Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien, Austria (2004);
1990 – 1995: Faculty of Economic Science, University of Zagreb, B. Sci. Economics.

CHRIS BUCKLE, BSC MEMBER OF SUPERVISORY BOARD

Chris is a seasoned financial professional with over 20 years’ experience in providing structured finance and equity capital to companies in both Western and Central & Eastern Europe.

Since 2005 Chris has been a partner at Mezzanine Management, the first dedicated mezzanine fund manager for Central and Eastern Europe. It manages four funds with total funds raised of over EUR 840 million. The latest fund, AMC Capital Capital IV ScSP was established in mid-2017 with EUR 264 million committed capital. The four funds have made 49 investments in 12 countries of the central and eastern European region to date.

Between 2000 and 2005 Chris was head of Acquisition Finance, Central and Eastern Europe at Erste Bank where he was a pioneer in the region’s fledgling acquisition finance market.

Before joining Erste Bank in 1997, he was Investment Manager at HSBC Ventures, a private equity operation focusing on small buy-outs in the UK.

Chris is British and lives in Prague. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Loughborough University and a Diploma in Marketing.