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Teknova welcomes Stephen Gunstream as CEO

His appointment galvanizes customer-centric approach and focus on advancing diagnostics, bioprocessing, and cell and gene therapies

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Teknova, a leading ISO 13485-certified manufacturer of cell culture media and supplements, protein purification buffers, and molecular biology reagents, is pleased to announce the appointment of Stephen Gunstream as chief executive officer. Stephen has nearly 20 years of experience in the life sciences industry, with tenures including Vice President and General Manager for the research and clinical business at BD Biosciences and Chief Commercial Officer at Integrated DNA Technologies. He joins Teknova at an exciting time as the company looks to facilitate advancement in the fields of bioproduction, cell and gene therapy, and molecular diagnostics.

Founded in 1996, Teknova provides core reagents for a multitude of life science applications, from basic molecular biology and cell culture to drug purification and development for cell and gene therapies. The company, which obtained ISO 13485 certification in 2018 to meet GMP manufacturing needs, prides itself on maintaining an incredibly customer-centric approach. The product portfolio aligns well with evolving scientific needs as organizations migrate from research and development to commercial manufacturing. The company is unique in its ability to respond to rapid changes in demand.

Founder and retiring CEO, Ted Davis, said, “Teknova began after I witnessed a need to manufacture small batches of custom buffers, reagents, and solutions quickly. We were able to achieve this and the company has been growing ever since. We are very excited to have Stephen join us to steer our future development. We went through a long process to find the right person; Stephen understands our culture and vision extremely well. The company is in great hands and I am confident that we will experience dramatic growth due to his great track record and ethos, passion, and drive.”

Stephen Gunstream said about joining the company, “Teknova is a special company. First and foremost, it is due to the people in the organization, and I feel very privileged to lead them as CEO. Ted has built a wonderful business that is always asking what we can do to advance scientific breakthroughs and then delivering. It is a great fit as my fundamental belief is that a business will be successful, no matter what, if you focus on the customer.”

There are many opportunities for Teknova, Gunstream notes. The company already services thousands of scientists, with an even split of its customer base between the life sciences and pharma/biopharma. “We’re in some really exciting markets,” he added, “Teknova is in a great position as we can do things others can’t, such as rapidly developing custom GMP products at scale. The beauty of Teknova is that we can shift on a dime and quickly deliver products and solutions that really help our customers. In the long term it is my passion to develop a global organization that can retain that agility and customer focus—I think that would be really, game changing for the entire industry. At the end of the day, it’s about what we can do to enable the breakthroughs that will have a real impact on human lives.”

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