EU Head of Regulatory Affairs & Technical Director, Clever Leaves
Rita Prazeres has a degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the Faculty of Pharmacy of Lisbon’s University, Portugal. Regulatory Affairs Specialist by the Portuguese Pharmaceutical Order (College of the Speciality of Regulatory Affairs) and Post-graduated in GMP for Medicinal Cannabis from the Faculty of Pharmacy of Lisbon’s University & Military Laboratory.
Rita has more than 20y in Pharmaceutical Industry, having experienced many different company ‘environments due to several Mergers & Acquisitions. More than 14y as Director of Regulatory Affairs, Market Access and Pharmacovigilance of Actavis & Aurobindo Pharma Groups, responsible for Registration of medicinal products, Price & Reimbursement, Pharmacovigilance, Portfolio management and Intellectual Property Management.
In 2019, Rita embraced a new challenge in the Medicinal Cannabis as EU Head of Regulatory Affairs & Technical Director at Clever Leaves Portugal. Responsible for the licensing activities of the company in Portugal, overseeing Quality Compliance (Quality Assurance & Quality Control) and Cannabis Regulatory framework in Europe.
Olga Melero Morales
Sales Manager Spain at Ionisos Ibérica
Olga Melero Morales, has a university degree in Chemistry from UAM (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid) and a master in Marketing and Sales from ESIC Business and Marketing School. She’s also a Radioactive Facility Supervisor issued by CNS (Consejo de Seguridad Nacional).
Olga has been working for Ionisos Ibérica for the last 20 years in several departments, first as validations and quality control responsible, later as customer support and finally as Sales and business development manager of Ionisos in Spain.
Marta Rodríguez Vélez
Associate Consultant at Azierta
Marta Rodríguez Vélez is a Biologist, Master’s Degree in Pharmaceutical Industry and Master’s Degree in Business Administration.
During her 20 years of professional career, she has always been engaged with the pharmaceutical industry, being involved in research projects, clinical trials and, during her last 17 years, as consultant for pharmaceutical companies, with a high expertise in Regulatory Affairs, Pharmacovigilance and Quality Assurance in the industrial area.
During the last 5 years she has led several Medical Cannabis projects globally, acting as a consultant and project manager, helping companies to understand the applicable regulation and to align their business strategy with the regulatory strategy. She was Director of the MedCannHub by Azierta, from which she managed projects in various areas related to the medical cannabis industry in Europe and Latin America. She’s now Associate Consultant for Azierta.
She is member of the board in the Spanish Association of Industry Pharmacist (AEFI), speaker in courses and conferences and associate professor in Pharma Business Schools.
Marta’s role is to advise Life Science companies to guarantee their compliance with existing regulations and to lead the continuous improvement of their teams and systems.
CEO of Stepwise Pharma & Engineering
Aldo Vidinha, CEO and Founder of Stepwise – Pharma & Engineering, internationally experienced leader with over 14 years’ experience in pharmaceutical industry in areas such as Engineering, Validation & Qualification, GMP Compliance, Quality Assurance and Manufacturing.
Co-founder and former COO of Holigen, a Portuguese GMP Medicinal Cannabis licensed producer.
Project lead for CapEx projects up to €18 million in major international pharmaceutical players.
Expert in Medicinal Cannabis industry, that has led and delivered a fully licensed Medicinal Cannabis company and facilities.
Highly driven and motivated leader experienced in business strategic thinking, building High Performance Teams and business consulting (executive and governance levels).
Pharma Business Unit Manager at Stepwise Pharma & Engineering
Nuno Rebelo dos Santos is Pharma Business Unit Manager at STEPWISE – PHARMA & ENGINEERING.
Chemist with a post-graduation in business administration has over of 15 years of experience in multinational chemical and pharmaceutical industries, from API development to drug product manufacturing.
Quality Assurance professional with vast experience in the shopfloor, production, auditing, inspection and in leading the approval of pharmaceutical units by national and international health authorities.
Project Manager for Drug Product activities with world’s top 5 Pharmaceutical player.
Experience in Medicinal Cannabis, API, oral and parenteral Drug Product industries.
Responsible of the Introduction of New Products & Microbiological Control Department at LEF
Sara Figueiredo has a degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Lisbon. She is currently developing a doctoral project in the scope of three-dimensional printing of medicines at FFUL, in collaboration with LEF – Infosaúde and Research Centre of Egas Moniz.
She started her professional activity as laboratory technician at Quality Control & Stability department in LEF – Infosaúde. During the period of 2018 to 2021, Sara Figueiredo assumed the supervisor role in the same department.
Nowadays and since 2021 she is responsible of the Introduction of New Products & Microbiological Control department at LEF, in which all analytical activities in the scope of Medical Cannabis are carried out.
Additionally, she is author of scientific communications and publications in congresses and scientific journals. Her academic experience also includes the role of teacher in technical-scientific courses from 2016 to the present.
Quality Consultant Manager at LEF
Graduated in Pharmaceutical Sciences at Coimbra’s Faculty of Pharmacy, Fábio Teles has been doing his career on Pharmaceutical Industry, more specifically on Quality Assurance field.
After completing his master’s degree, Fábio started his work life in Labesfal – Fresenius Kabi Portugal, in Quality Assurance Unit – Personnel Qualification and then moved to Tecnimede to integrate Group Quality Unit.
Now, Fábio is the Quality Consultant Manager of LEF, where support medicinal cannabis players to get their authorizations, implement their quality systems and be in compliance with all legislation and good practices, in order to help them on achieving their goals.
Quality Consultant at LEF
It was at LEF that Catarina Serra began her professional pharmaceutical career, three years ago.
Graduated in Pharmaceutical Sciences at Lisbon’s Faculty of Pharmacy, with a certification in Toxicology for Pharmaceutical and Regulatory by the American College of Toxicology (ACT), Catarina has also a Biomedical Sciences bachelor from Coimbra Health School, having always wanted to work in health sciences.
Nowadays, Catarina integrates LEF’s consultancy team, being responsible for providing a toxicologically driven viewpoint in the elaboration of risk assessments and in supporting the implementation of quality systems for the pharmaceutical industry and more specifically, cannabis-based companies.
Qualified Person of Tilray Portugal
André Neves, Qualified Person of Tilray Portugal, has a degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences and a post-graduation in Pharmaceutical Technology from the Faculty of Pharmacy of Coimbra University, and specialist title in Pharmaceutical Industry by the Portuguese Pharmaceutical Order (College of the Speciality of Pharmaceutical Industry).
André developed his professional career in the pharmaceutical industry in manufacturing management functions specializing in manufacturing processes and associated quality requirements of medicines, medical devices, nutraceuticals and cosmetics in a wide range of pharmaceutical dosage forms.
Since 2018 at Tilray, in the role of Qualified Person, André participated in the establishment of the company in Portugal, implementation of the pharmaceutical quality system and obtention of the GMP certifications, and currently ensures the release of cannabis products to patients around the world.
Co-Founder of Muvu Technologies
Tiago Peralta Santos is the Co-founder and CEO of Muvu Technologies. Tiago holds a Master’s in Electrical and Computer Engineering at the NOVA University of Lisbon, where he was a researcher at UNINOVA-CTS, a leading research center in AI and IoT.
In 2015, Tiago founded Muvu Technologies to transform the industrial sector with cutting-edge technologies to improve productivity and reduce waste.
Tiago is also the Head of Product of the RAILES platform, a Smart MES (Manufacturing Execution System) that helps manufacturers digitize processes in the industry through real-time monitoring of production systems. Tiago is on a mission to bring all Industries to the 4.0 era.
Lead Auditor and Certifier of Control Union Certifications
Ruty Spier was involved in the development of the Israeli Standards for Medical Cannabis (IMC-G.A. P) and the global Standards for Medical Cannabis CUMCS-G.A.P, CUMCS EQUIVALENCY IMC-G.A.P.
She is the Lead auditor of CUMCS-G.A.P and Certifier of CUMCS EQUIVALENCY IMC-G.A.P
Ruty is involved in building seminars for medical cannabis for growers, Internal auditors, and Control-Union auditors. She’s also a lecturer at international conferences for medical cannabis, and a practical biology expert of fruits and vegetables with expertise in testing and standardization.
Ana Margarida de Jesus
Subintendent of the Public Security Police
Ana Margarida de Jesus, Subintendent of the Polícia de Segurança Pública, graduated in Police Sciences, post-graduated in Legal Medical Sciences and is attending a Master’s Degree course in Police Sciences, in the specialization of Security Management.
Since 2003 she has headed various operational and administrative sub-units of the Public Security Police structure, namely Barreiro Police Station, Guimarães Criminal Investigation Station, Braga Police Division Command, where she organized and commanded major sporting and entertainment events.
Working in the Department of Private Security since 2017, currently and since 2019 heads the Audit and Inspection Division of this department, the entity that certifies cannabis cultivation and production facilities.
With participation in conferences underlying the theme of private security, she is also a trainer in this area in various police courses.
Chief Scientific Officer (CSO) at Holistic Industries
Adam Kavalier, Chief Scientific Officer (CSO) at Holistic Industries, started his career in academic research and has been applying science to manufacturing and operations over the last 10 years, creating and building businesses in the food and Cannabis industries.
As CSO of Holistic Industries, a US-based multi-state vertically integrated Cannabis operator, Adam has built and scaled the manufacturing department from a single state into nine markets over six years. Adam also leads the science program, which is responsible for all product development and clinical trial research at Holistic Industries.
Prior to his work in the Cannabis industry, Adam conducted over 10 years of academic research in biochemistry and pharmacology. While in graduate school Adam also started and scaled a food science company which was recognized on National Public Radio, the Smithsonian and Nature Magazine.
Adam obtained his PhD from the City University of New York and New York Botanical Garden and conducted his post-doc research at Cornell Medical College. Adam’s academic work resulted in 10 peer-reviewed publications and two patents spanning research in mass spectrometry, medicinal plants, cancer pharmacology and drug discovery.
João Taborda da Gama
Partner of Gama Glória
João Taborda Gama is a founding partner of Gama Glória, a law firm based in Lisbon, a senior advisor of the Albright Stonebridge Group, in Washington DC, and he teaches at the Catholic University in Portugal. João is a member of the Scientific Committee of the Future Forum of the Gulbenkian Foundation and sits on the Business Ethics Committee of the Portuguese Pharma Association.
João advises governments, patients, NGOs and global companies on the regulation, use, production and trade of controlled substances in medical, religious, spiritual and recreational contexts. João has successfully advised global companies obtaining licenses to cultivate and produce GACP/GMP medical cannabis, as well as securing a marketing authorization for the first registered medical cannabis product in Portugal. He advises on all aspects of the cannabis supply chain, including on international trade and transit, business combinations and taxation, and the CBD / Hemp market. João is a counsel companies doing research and using psychedelics to treat mental illness.
João has served as a political advisor to the President of Portugal and was a member of the Portuguese Government.
He published “The Regulation of Medical Cannabis in Portugal” (Brazil, 2019) and “Regulate and Protect: towards a new drug policy” (Lisbon, 2022).
Co-Founder and CEO of Cannaflos
Jonathan Haehn is a graduated German engineer and co-founder and CEO of Cannaflos, a licensed GMP and GDP pharmaceutical company in Germany with strong focus on the finished product development for cannabinoid-based medicine always searching for innovative ways using digital tools to enhance the quality of life of patients.
In charge of business development and supply, Jonathan’s role is to achieve regulatory and qualitative requirements for cultivation and the subsequent processing steps for the production of medicinal cannabis products. Through the last 4 years of consulting, visiting and auditing GACP cultivation and GMP facilities in Israel, Colombia, Canada, Spain and Portugal Jonathan became an expert for medicinal cannabis in the field of pharmaceutical compliance, processing techniques, breeding, process validation, and sure quality assurance of all these processes.
With their consulting brand CANsulting, Jonathan and his team offer their expertise in regulatory compliance, market access strategies and product releases on the German market to cultivators and processors worldwide.
Jonathan is the driving force behind Cannaflos Genetics, a cannabis genetic and IP focused developing and licensing department of Cannaflos, that offers licensing of CPVO registered strains and customized strain development including preclinical studies.
As a highly motivated leader and team player he loves to create the situation of flow in teams leading to high performing individuals and amazing group dynamics.
Senior Manager at KPMG Advisory for the Corporate and Public Sector
Martim has Master Degree in Environmental Engineering from Instituto Superior Técnico, Lisbon Portugal and is currently Senior Manager at KPMG Advisory for the Corporate and Public Sector.
With over 14 years of experience in consultancy, Martim is currently KPMG’s responsible for ESG and Sustainability advisory services in Portugal. Martim has coordinated multiple projects related with the different Sustainability dimensions and, together with his team, has been supporting tier 1 companies in Portugal the journey from ESG strategy definition to the design an operationalization of action plans and reporting.
Martim has worked in 3 different continents and his cross sectoral experience, ranging from the industrial, pharmaceutical and retail to the energy and telecommunications sector gives him an integrated and holistic view on the ESG challenges companies are facing, regulatory trends and stakeholders’ expectations. His current interests and focus are decarbonization, climate risks and circular economy.
Co-Founder & CEO Vigia/Cannavigia
Luc Richner was born in Switzerland, but raised in Asia. After finishing his education and studies in Switzerland, Luc followed his calling to be an entrepreneur. Based on his experience in logistics and management, Luc’s first venture was dedicated to upcycling used materials to high-end furniture. In the following years, he ventured into the global logistics industry, established an expert consultancy to “bridge worlds” and has created a unique, local and sustainable farm to table restaurant in Bali, Indonesia. Back in Switzerland he successfully finished the first Executive MBA Digital Leadership program at the HWZ, “University of Applied Sciences” in Zurich.
Based on his experience and extraordinary knowledge about highly efficient and transparent supply chains and logistics, Luc Richner has co-founded Vigia AG – a software platform for more transparency and compliance in the global and local supply chains, with its first dedicated industry being cannabis. Cannavigia is Europe’s pioneer compliance software for businesses to trace, secure and simplify transactions along the entire cannabis supply network.
Co-Founder & CCO Vigia/Cannavigia
Elias Galantay is an experienced business consultant who dedicated his focus to the cannabis sector several years ago. He was one of the first compliant growers to successfully apply for a cultivation license in Alaska. Elias set up one of the more extensive operations per the US compliance standards. He has spent the last few years as a consultant, helping growers set up and optimize their operations and guiding them through the licensing and certification processes.
At Cannavigia, he manages GACP and GMP projects for medicinal cannabis and implements the Cannavigia Compliance Suite regarding customer workflows. Elias helped to set up one of the first Cannabis THC research licenses in Switzerland and consulted on different cannabis cultivation projects in Europe, the US, and Africa. Elias advocates for a digital traceability approach for cannabis products to build trust for regulators and consumers alike.
Director of Environmental Monitoring Systems at Rotronic AG
James Pickering is Director of Environmental Monitoring Systems at Rotronic AG, part of the Process Sensing Technologies (PST) Group.
Working for Rotronic AG in various positions since 2008, James has an MBA in international management and is helping build up PST’s continuous and configurable real-time monitoring systems (hardware, software and services) to help regulated customers ensure the highest quality whilst remaining compliant and saving time and money.
Experience in environmental monitoring solutions for GxP regulated industries (GAMP5/FDA CFR 21 Part 11/EU Annex 11).
Born in Lisbon in 1962, found out, at a very young age, that she had one purpose and drive: to improve the quality of life of people.
Knowing clearly that she missed the courage to be a physician – what her lovely Mother strongly wanted her to be – and that meant, for her, to have to, from time to time, convey the end of hope to parents abouts sons and vice-versa, she absolutely fell in love of building hope through medicines by making it abiding all laws and rules that, for her, means, above all, respect for the patients, in which quality, efficacy and safety are concerned: she performed already a risk analysis and the accordingly preventive measures.
So, she studied Industrial Pharmacy at the Pharmacy University of Lisbon from 1980 to 1986, professional mandatory trained included with the duration of 7 and not the regular 6 months, because she already wanted to spend a month in training in Technical Direction. and then become Industrial Pharmacy Specialist in 1996.
Delivering hope and respect fulfilled her for years, in several companies, either national or international, loving to, like a Mary Kondo of ancient days, thinking and designing the best flows to have the operations running smoothly and in absolute pharmaceutical compliance. As there’s no silver lining without a cloud, when everything was running almost by it’s self and routine comes in, she prepares the people for her moving to another job: same purpose, same curiosity, and same will of achieving perfection at an affordable price and increasing the company profitability and sustainability at the highest possible degree.
Aligned to her purpose and drive is an infinite curiosity, that so far didn’t kill a single cat, and that took her always along in search of the most modern knowledge and for ever a learner: continuing always linked to pharmaceutical industry, she dove in consultancy, either organizational or of people, which have immensely broadened her horizons and consciousness of business and its markets.
One day, with more than 30 years of experience and very good results, she heard of Medicinal Cannabis, and fall for #GreeningHealthcare and #CannabiSophy, remembering and valuing the ancestral routes of the first medicinal hope providers and with a very wide toolbox to apply in this new market, where it’s first job was EU QP. And about it and its value in the Medicinal Cannabis Industry, she will talk in her presentation.
Founder, Chairman & CEO Somaí Pharmaceuticals
Michael Sassano is one of the most respected executives in the pharmaceutical cannabis space today.
He was an early investor in the cannabis industry in the United States; today he is celebrated in mainstream business and biopharma media as an international authority on developing large-scale cannabis infrastructures throughout the world and the most advanced pharmaceutical cannabinoid products.
Michael is also widely respected for successfully predicting long term cannabis market trends and movements, which he generously shares in many forums. He is well known for leading a merger of the cannabis cultivation company he built and operated, called Solaris Farms, with The Sanctuary. Over the last few years, Michael has shifted focus to his role as CEO and Chairman of the Board for Somai Pharmaceuticals LTD, a European pharmaceutical and biotech company centered on manufacturing in Lisbon, Portugal and distribution of EU GMP-certified cannabinoid-containing pharmaceuticals throughout EU.
Chief Operations Officer of Cannexpor Pharma
António Vieira, 47 years old, has a degree in Civil Engineering from Instituto Superior Técnico and a Master Lisbon MBA from Universidade Católica.
He started his career in the construction sector, being connected to the areas of projects and infrastructures, holding various positions for about 15 years.
Five years ago, he took a role of Senior Project Manager in the construction of the first Medicinal Cannabis unit in Portugal, having then assumed the general direction of Tilray Portugal.
In 2020 he accepted the invitation to join Cannexpor Pharma, assuming the management of the company in Portugal and ensuring all stages of the production process from the design, preparation and manufacture of the product, until it is available for sale in the domestic and foreign markets, complying with all legal and regulatory requirements.
Manuel João Oliveira
General Director of Iberfar
Manuel João has a degree in pharmaceutical sciences and also in Business Management.
He has over 35 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, and he’s the General Director of Iberfar.
He’s a lecturer at FFUL and acted as a consultant for several projects on medicinal cannabis.