Kite Pharma, Inc. (NASDAQ:KITE) announced that Dr. Franz B. Humer, the former Chairman and Chief Executive of Roche Holding Ltd., has been appointed to the Company’s Board of Directors.

Dr. Humer stated, “Kite Pharma is at the forefront of advancing cancer T cell immunotherapy which, in my view, is one of the most promising new approaches in oncology. Kite’s programs have the potential to change the paradigm of cancer treatment, and I look forward to working closely with the accomplished team at Kite.”

Dr. Humer began his career in the pharmaceutical industry in 1973, joining Schering Plough Corporation where he held various General Management positions in Latin America and Europe. After leaving Schering Plough, he joined the Board of Glaxo Holdings plc and progressed to be responsible for research, business development, manufacturing, commercial strategy, and all non-US operations for 13 years. Subsequent to this, Dr. Humer served as Head of Pharmaceuticals and then as Chief Operating Officer of F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd., prior to his taking the helm as CEO at Roche Group (1998-2001) and then Chairman and CEO (2001-2008). His tenure as Chairman of Roche Holding Ltd. extended from 2008 to 2014.

Dr. Humer serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children and the Humer Foundation.

He is also Chairman of Diageo plc, an Independent Director with Citigroup Inc., Chugai Pharmaceuticals Ltd. (Japan), Bial Pharmaceuticals (Portugal), WISeKey (Cyber Security Company, Switzerland) and a member of the International Advisory Board of Allianz SE.

In 2000, Dr. Humer received the Oliver R. Grace Award for distinguished service in advancing cancer research.

“Dr. Humer possesses unique experience within the pharmaceutical industry, including his 20-year tenure at Roche. During this period he transformed the company, including refining Roche’s focus on cancer therapies and completing the acquisition of Genentech,” said Arie Belldegrun, M.D., FACS, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Kite. “We are deeply honored to welcome Franz, one of the most respected and revered pharma executives, to the Kite Pharma Board. We are excited to gain his unique insights as we continue to progress our cancer immunotherapy programs in development and toward commercialization.” (Original Source)

Shares of Kite Pharma closed yesterday at $65.56. KITE has a 1-year high of $89.21 and a 1-year low of $24.86. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $61.22 and its 200-day moving average is $60.72.

On the ratings front, Kite Pharma has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on September 3, FBR analyst Edward White initiated coverage with a Hold rating on KITE and a price target of $64, which represents a slight downside potential from current levels. Separately, on August 17, Mizuho’s Peter Lawson maintained a Buy rating on the stock and has a price target of $90.

According to, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Edward White and Peter Lawson have a total average return of -24.6% and 11.5% respectively. White has a success rate of 12.5% and is ranked #3570 out of 3757 analysts, while Lawson has a success rate of 61.3% and is ranked #345.

Overall, one research analyst has assigned a Hold rating and 6 research analysts have given a Buy rating to the stock. When considering if perhaps the stock is under or overvalued, the average price target is $90.00 which is 37.3% above where the stock closed yesterday.

Kite Pharma Inc is a clinical-stage bio pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of novel cancer immunotherapy products designed to harness the power of a patient’s own immune system to eradicate cancer cells.