Zogenix, Inc. (NASDAQ:ZGNX), a pharmaceutical company developing and commercializing products for the treatment of central nervous system (CNS) disorders, announced that it is implementing its succession plan as the Company focuses on advancing its late-stage product development pipeline. Zogenix’sBoard of Directors has unanimously appointed Stephen Farr, Ph.D., previously serving as the Company’s President, as Roger Hawley’s successor and new CEO of Zogenix effective immediately. Hawley will remain active in the Company during the transition and will continue to be a member of Zogenix’s Board of Directors in addition to pursuing investment and consulting opportunities in the life sciences industry. Farr will also continue to serve as the Company’s President.

Hawley and Farr co-founded Zogenix in August 2006 and have actively led the Company through an initial public offering in 2010, developed and launched two commercial products, and recently secured the acquisition of Brabant Pharma. The transformational acquisition of Brabant in October 2014 included a late-stage orphan drug candidate, which significantly added to the Company’s development pipeline.

“I am grateful to the Zogenix employees who have contributed to the development and introduction of important medicines to support people living with migraine and those suffering from severe chronic pain,” said Hawley. “As the Company focuses on the development of ZX008 for Dravet syndrome and advances Relday for schizophrenia, it’s the right time to implement the succession plan with this change in leadership. Steve’s successful track record as a strong leader at Zogenix and directing the development and regulatory approval process of innovative products makes him the perfect choice to lead the Company through its next strategic phase.”

“The Board would like to acknowledge and thank Roger for his vision and dedication toZogenix,” said Cam Garner, Chairman of the Board. “Consistent with our ongoing succession planning process for senior leadership, we believe Steve’s expertise will position Zogenix to thrive under this new growth strategy, and we welcome him as the successor CEO.”

Farr has served as President and as a member of the Board of Directors since the founding ofZogenix and has played a leading role in the new long-term strategic plan for Zogenix. Farr is driving the Company’s focus on the initiation of Phase 3 studies for ZX008 and obtaining results of the Relday multi-dose study, which will lead to seeking worldwide partnering opportunities.

“I am excited to take on this role at Zogenix during this transformational year in the Company’s life cycle. We are on track with several near-term milestones for our clinical programs in Dravet syndrome and schizophrenia,” said Farr. “In addition, with the recent divestiture of Zohydro ER, we are now fully funded with non-dilutive capital to execute key milestones through 2016 and to continue advancing these programs towards regulatory submissions in the U.S. and Europe.”

Farr added, “I wish to extend my personal appreciation to Roger for his leadership and partnership. I look forward to building on this experience and leading Zogenix to its next level of success.” (Original Source)

Shares of Zogenix closed today at $1.40, down $0.14 or 9.09%. ZGNX has a 1-year high of $2.87 and a 1-year low of $1.07. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $1.46 and its 200-day moving average is $1.35.

On the ratings front, Zogenix has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on March 11, Brean Capital analyst Difei Yang reiterated a Buy rating on ZGNX, with a price target of $2.50, which implies an upside of 62.3% from current levels. Separately, on the same day, William Blair’s Tim Lugo downgraded the stock to Hold.

According to TipRanks.com, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Difei Yang and Tim Lugo have a total average return of 19.2% and -3.5% respectively. Yang has a success rate of 68.4% and is ranked #385 out of 3581 analysts, while Lugo has a success rate of 43.8% and is ranked #3133.

Zogenix Inc is a pharmaceutical company engaged in commercializing & developing therapies that address clinical needs for people living with pain-related and CNS disorders that needs treatment alternatives to help return to normal daily functioning.