Henk Joos is Director Life Sciences & Healthcare. After a PhD in genetics (1986) from the University of Ghent in Belgium, Dr. Joos started his professional career in Plant Genetic Systems, where he became part of the PGS leadership team that managed the 715M USD sale of PGS to AgrEvo. Henk held subsequently international positions with AgrEvo, Aventis Crop Science, Bayer CropScience, D1 Oils and Quinvita. In 2013 Henk became managing director of FlandersBio, Under his leadership FlandersBio grew to 350 members, financial self-sufficiency and a cluster with international fame, and became one of the leading life sciences clusters in Europe. Since 2018, Henk is the Director Life Sciences and healthcare for AGIO Capital.
When did you join AGIO Capital and how did you get in touch with us?
I joined AGIO Capital and Business Solutions in May, 2018. I had been in touch while I was managing director of Flanders.Bio, the Flanders cluster organization where AGIO Capital had become a member of. They were then looking for somebody ‘with a network in life sciences and biotech in Belgium (and Europe) and apparently I fitted that bill.
Why did you join us?
I was back then and also now a strong believer in the importance for European life sciences companies to internationalize. In my first discussions with Sven, I was critical about China, also because I knew the appetite of Belgian biotechs in China was very limited back then. But Sven did manage to persuade me…
What do you like about your job, what’s your favorite part?
The most interesting thing I like about what I do is CONNECTING: people, projects, companies, cultures, teams, ideas…. In fact now that I think about it, that is the most important thing I have been doing the last 35 years in my professional career.
‘Connecting the dots’ is the only way to move forward, as I believe as an individual, one can do very little. Connected with others in a constructive manner, one can do about everything.
What are your future ambitions?
Good question. Since I have just started the second half of my career, probably time to reflect. But I know already the answer: I will continue to connect, that is the only thing I know works and where I have been together with my teams successful. And it is a perfect way to counter people who believe in ‘Divide et Impera’ approach…
What are your hobbies, what do you do in your spare time?
I like to garden, to travel and recently started to learn Italian. I would love to read more books but have failed badly sofar. I will keep trying but I keep finding wisdom looking at other people.
And at last, why is AGIO different from the rest?
AGIO is different because we have a ‘special’ goal we try to achieve with ‘special’ people gathered in a ‘special’ team and we do things in ‘special’ ways. We are truly ‘special’.