The Celgene Story

Passion, innovation, courage.

The Company’s commitment to changing the course of human health through bold pursuits in science, life-enhancing therapies and a promise to always put patients first.

Challenges arise on the job every day for Jessica Cybrowski, an executive specialist at Celgene Patient Support in Berkeley Heights, N.J. She helps patients navigate the challenges of insurance and Medicare coverage to ensure they have access to the medicine they need. Over her years with the company, Jessica has been able to help countless patients access their medications. “I have expertise that is practical and real,” she said. “My team and I are helping them fight cancer. What could be more rewarding than that?”

From helping people obtain their medications to using cutting-edge scientific technology to discover new treatments, Celgene’s entrepreneurial spirit, teamwork-oriented culture and commitment to rare diseases create a unique platform for transforming patient outcomes. At every level, it is growing and evolving. “We are a company of groundbreakers, advocates, partners, creators and colleagues,” Chairman and CEO Robert Hugin said. “We have built, and will continue to build, a company where every employee’s best work is supported and celebrated for the impact it has on patient lives.”

Passion, innovation and courage have been in the company’s genes since its founding. “Our journey to a successful company included unexpected road blocks, the courage of our people to convert those road blocks into opportunities and seize them, the vision to not only overcome obstacles but to transform them into novel approaches and progress,” former Chairman & CEO Sol J. Barer, PhD said. On those principles, Celgene has become a leader in delivering medicine to patients with unmet needs, by digging deeper to resolve unanswered scientific questions and working tirelessly to improve the lives of patients worldwide.

By taking chances, investing heavily into research and development, and taking a unique perspective, Celgene has been able to offer patients options that can enhance their quality of life. Perhaps the ultimate example of their boldness was bringing thalidomide to market for patients with serious rare diseases who had few treatment choices. With persistence and creativity, Celgene was able to transform this maligned drug into new hope for cancer patients in need.

Whether it’s working to deliver innovative therapies to emerging markets that lack proper infrastructure or doggedly pursuing regulatory approvals to bring new options to treat rare diseases, Celgene employees are committed to putting patients first

According to Hugin, “it’s not hard to set bold goals—you don’t need to meet many cancer patients to understand the urgency.” And he makes it clear that the company supports boldness, creativity and bravery from the top down. “This is a risky business, and failure is a key component of learning. No one wants to fail, but the important thing is that when you do fail, you learn from it.”

Joel Beetsch, vice president of Patient Advocacy, has been impressed by the openness of the company and how the typical limitations of red tape in larger organizations don’t tend to apply at Celgene. “It’s a make-it-happen culture,” he said.

Whether it’s working to deliver innovative therapies to emerging markets that lack proper infrastructure or doggedly pursuing regulatory approvals to bring new options to treat rare diseases, Celgene employees are committed to putting patients first. If an obstacle arises, colleagues work together to brainstorm and figure out a solution to the issue. And they also take time to celebrate successes. “Everyone at Celgene shares a common focus: helping patients get the medication their prescriber thinks will improve or maintain their quality of life,” Jessica said. “We know that each of us contributes to helping a patient get what they need in some way or another.  It’s a very unifying mission, which is rewarding in itself.”

Celgene employees also reach out to their communities off the clock. One employee with a friend in need of a bone marrow transplant established a bone marrow registry within a couple weeks.  And just last year, employees exceeded their fundraising goal for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s “Light The Night” event by 247 percent. They’ve also run collections for breast cancer research and have donated money for tsunami relief efforts.

Community dedication especially shined following Hurricane Sandy, which devastated much of the east coast, including parts of New Jersey, surrounding the Celgene Summit headquarters. Hundreds of Celgene employees worked to maintain continuity of services to patients, even while their own homes were damaged and their families were without electricity. They demonstrated resiliency and tenacity so that patients both locally and worldwide did not have a disruption in their access to critical therapies.

Celgene is committed to conducting business based on integrity, ethics, sound decision making, respect for the environment and behaviors that reflect its corporate culture. They have expanded efforts with the aim of continuous improvement of environmental, social and economic performance. These efforts include new methods for patient support and advocacy, personnel interactions with corporate leadership and support for new programs in local communities.

For Axelle Beauchamp, a senior manager of Human Resources in Boudry, Switzerland, the creative employees who collaborate toward a common goal are the critical Celgene elements—the genes that make up the company. “People are very talented, motivated, and driven to think outside the box and make a difference,” she said. “Everyone is engaged because they believe in the mission. Having the same values, they excel in delivering results.”

The story of Celgene encompasses unexpected opportunities, the courage to seize those opportunities, and the vision to transform those opportunities into progress. Ultimately, Celgene hopes to turn some of the most formidable disease challenges of the 21st century into manageable conditions. “Only by embracing innovation will we be empowered to do well by doing good, while promoting global prosperity and human progress for a better tomorrow,” Hugin said.