Moa Technology hires new CFO and CBO to expand leadership team for further growth


Moa Technology, the agricultural biotechnology (agribio) company tackling herbicide-resistant weeds that threaten the world’s food security, has announced the appointment of Rob Quinn as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Apostolos Klontzaris as Chief Business Officer (CBO), strengthening its leadership team and preparing it for continued growth.

Herbicide-resistant weeds threaten agricultural productivity and are a significant problem for growing numbers of farmers globally. Farmers can lose up to 40% of their crop yield due to weed growth without effective herbicides. The situation is comparable to the threat from antibiotic-resistant bacteria to the efficacy of certain medicines.

As CFO, Dr Rob Quinn will help Moa continue the company’s evolution from a research-based one spun out of the University of Oxford in 2017 and focused on identifying potential herbicides to one that now has a strong pipeline of candidates, employs more than 60 people and is seeking to expand its base of both investors and partners.

He will be based in Oxford and joins as an experienced biotech CFO, having worked as CFO at Silence Therapeutics, BenevolentAI, Pharnext and most recently as CFO and interim CEO at Aptamer Group. He has extensive experience helping biotech companies raise funding through equity funding and industry collaborations.

His appointment also reflects Moa’s use of cutting-edge biotechnology processes to identify, understand and develop next-generation herbicides with game-changing speed and accuracy.

Rob has over 10 years of experience working in the life sciences industry, initially in M&A Advisory at Deloitte, before spending several years at GSK before joining Silence Therapeutics. In addition, he brings broad operational experience, having worked in several fast-growing businesses.

Apostolos Klontzaris joins as Chief Business Officer, bringing over two decades of experience in the agritech and crop sciences industry, gained at leaders in the sector, Bayer and Syngenta, and at innovative startups.

At Moa, he will help drive transformative collaborations with industry partners to accelerate the development and commercialisation of Moa’s pipeline of next-generation synthetic and bioherbicides based on novel modes of action (MOAs). 

Based at the Research Triangle Park in North Carolina, the largest research park in the United States, Apostolos will help Moa expand its footprint in North America and Europe, having worked on both continents. He will also help develop the company’s long-term commercialisation and go-to-market strategy.

Apostolos joins Moa from Oerth Bio, another agricultural biotech company, where he drove the company strategy and concluded several strategic partnerships with key industry players as Senior Vice President of Corporate and Business Development. 

Before this, he was Senior Principal at Flagship Pioneering, a venture fund developing first-in-category bioplatform companies to transform human health and sustainability. 

He previously spent two periods at Bayer Crop Science, totalling 14 years and including senior executive roles, most recently as CEO for Greece and Cyprus based in Athens, with the rest in Germany as Director of Business Development and Licensing following earlier roles as Mergers and Acquisitions Manager and Global Product Marketing Manager. 

Between these periods at Bayer, he spent five years at Syngenta Crop Protection as Post Patent Defence Lead for Europe, Africa and the Middle East and Senior Mergers and Acquisitions Manager.

Dr Virginia Corless, Chief Executive Officer of Moa Technology, said:“Moa is tackling a major crisis that threatens farmers’ livelihoods and global food security. We are delighted to welcome Rob and Apostolos to our team. 

“Their experience and track records will be invaluable in driving our commercialisation strategy, strategic development and industry collaborations. We are also pleased to be expanding our footprint with a key executive in the United States, who has extensive experience there and in Europe.”

Dr Rob Quinn, Chief Financial Officer of Moa Technology, said: “Given my background in biotech, I was quick to see the huge potential in Moa’s approach to the growing problem of herbicide-resistant weeds and the importance of developing next-generation herbicides at speed. It’s an exciting time for the company, and I look forward to helping it grow further and play a pioneering role in the industry.”

Apostolos Klontzaris, Chief Business Officer of Moa Technology, said: “The huge market for next-generation herbicides and Moa’s game-changing technology made this role hugely attractive. I am inspired and highly motivated by the company’s approach, focusing on truly innovative and safe modes of action.

“Moa’s potential to transform crop protection for farmers across the world, its prolific pipeline of potential new herbicides, and the importance of its work amid the threat from resistant weeds give it remarkable potential. I look forward to helping the company make the most of that, working with partners and investors to help it change the herbicide landscape.”

Rob has a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Manchester and trained to be a Chartered Accountant at Deloitte. Rob is from Dublin, Ireland and obtained a BSc from University College Dublin.

Apostolos has an MBA, an MSc in Pest Management and a BSc in Agricultural and Biological sciences, all from Newcastle University in the UK. He is an Athenian, the son of a farmer and speaks four languages.  

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