Job Details

Requisition Number 18-0127
Post Date 4/27/2018
Company Akcea
Title Director, Marketing - Canada
Employment Type Full Time

Akcea Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing drugs to treat patients with serious rare diseases. Our priority is to bring important new therapeutics to patients in need. In order to do so, we must drive clinical program execution, understand patient and physician needs and work with regulators to gain global approval and market access to these new therapeutics. Akcea has a portfolio of development-stage drugs covering multiple targets and disease states using advanced antisense therapeutics.

Akcea was established by Ionis Pharmaceuticals in late 2014 and was listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange in July 2017 under the symbol “AKCA.” Akcea is a global company headquartered in Cambridge, MA with offices in Carlsbad, CA and across the EU and Canada. 

Akcea's has 2 molecules currently under regulatory filing for the management of orphan disease.  Akcea’s products will be supported and commercialized in Canada through its Canadian subsidiary, Akcea Therapeutics Canada Inc.



The Associate Director, Marketing is responsible for the development and implementation of the strategic and operational plans for multiple world-class drug launches and brand commercialization efforts. He or she will work collaboratively with key markets, regional colleagues, and with our global peers to conceive, generate, evaluate, and execute clear, concise and actionable launch readiness and post-launch plans. Post-planning, he or she will oversee the full roll-out of tactical initiatives in support of Akcea Therapeutics Canada’s brands. This is an opportunity to work at the forefront of innovative science, defining and executing innovative and patient-centric solutions to deliver transformational therapies to patients with serious rare diseases. The ideal candidate will be an experienced marketing professional with a passion for the role, for science, for entrepreneurship and for innovation. Our Associate Director, Marketing must be a self-starter as well as a skilled marketing strategist, and must be able to inspire creativity and enthusiasm for marketing in other team members.


  • Serve as a key member of the commercialization team and contribute new ideas and approaches to help build cutting-edge commercial platforms.
  • Demonstrate a clear ability to translate strategy into action.
  • Serve as a subject matter expert for the product and the treatment landscape.
  • Conceive and drive execution of go-to-market launch strategies.
  • Foster strong partnerships with medical affairs, market access, sales, legal, regulatory and other functions to ensure aligned objectives and implementation of brand strategies.
  • Create innovative content for HCP education platforms, including peer-to-peer.
  • Drive creation of Canadian HCP-facing print and digital materials for field use in collaboration with our strategic brand agency.
  • Lead the development and execution of Brand Operational Plans and support the delivery and implementation of the core business planning activities including marketing communications and congress presence.
  • Understand key market trends and competitive environment to drive proactive strategies to maximize brand potential.
  • Ensure timely and efficient review of promotional materials and comply fully with all legal, regulatory, ethical and company guidelines and SOPs.
  • Manage external agencies to ensure excellent execution of marketing programs aligned with brand strategic imperatives.
  • Support the monitoring and proposal of improvement plans and initiatives for global brand performance by evaluating resource allocation to ensure maximum return on investment.
  • Ensure launch readiness aligned deliverables.
  • Oversee and execute against other projects or activities as assigned as well as undertaking ad hoc marketing duties/assignments.
  • Ensure compliance with IMC, PAAB, ASC and Health Canada rules and regulations.


  • Bachelor’s degree (minimum), preferably in scientific or business discipline.
  • 5+ years of strong marketing and sales background in a pharmaceutical market; rare disease experience preferred.
  • Understanding of PAAB Code and IMC Code of Ethical Practices.
  • Experience in leading and motivating agency partners to deliver high impact marketing initiatives.
  • In-line brand marketing experience.
  • Broad commercial experience including pre-launch.
  • Proven experience and knowledge of a broad base of external customers including patients, prescribers, payers, providers.
  • Demonstrated use of insights to deliver effective marketing strategies.
  • Thorough understanding of the brand development process and necessary commercial touch points.
  • Effective cross-functional project team leadership and influencing skills.
  • Ability to influence without direct line authority.
  • Strong leadership attributes to generate commitment and constructively resolve issues.
  • Understanding of the R&D process and importance of integrating commercial and development strategy and plans.
  • Knowledge of diagnostics and the personalized healthcare environment.
  • Ability to thrive in ambiguity, with an entrepreneurial mind-set and a proven track record of exploring new ways of working, driving new opportunities and catalyzing others to build creative solutions.
  • Scientific mind-set as well as skill-set.
  • Strong sense of urgency and ability to generate exceptional results by driving performance and collaborating across boundaries.
  • Innovates and develops an environment of continuous improvement and simplification.
  • Significant levels of ambition and motivation.
  • Enterprise mindset and focus; strong process skills and ability to effectively work in a matrixed organization with cross-functional teams.
  • Resourceful, nimble, decisive and proactive; must be able to manage multiple priorities in a fast-growing organization.
  • Sound judgment, high integrity and ability to maintain strict confidentiality.
  • Effective stakeholder and relationship management experience; able to interact and build trusted relationships with multiple levels.
  • Proven ability to manage, track, and evaluate the marketing budget in order to ensure delivery on commitments to the organization.
  • Fluency in both official languages a definite asset.


Excellent salary and benefits package offered.

Please visit our website,, to apply for this position.


Akcea Therapeutics, Inc. is proud to be an EEO employer.

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