Sven Harmsen, PhD, joined Merck Ventures, Performance Materials team as Investment Director in August 2016. Previously, Sven was working as Investment Principal at BASF Venture Capital (BVC), where he established BVC’s East Coast office in Cambridge, MA to coordinate investment activities in the eastern half of North America. Sven served as a Board Director for Advanced Bionutrition (ABN) and as a Board Observer for Aspen Aerogels and SLIPS Technologies. Originally he was hired by BASF as Head of Global New Business Development for its agrochemical division. Prior to joining BASF SE, Sven had worked for several years at a VC backed (now publicly listed) biotech company called 4SC near Munich, Germany. He started with 4SC as Head of Medicinal Chemistry and was later appointed Manager Business Development. Following a postdoc at Stanford University Sven started his industrial career in R&D at companies like Hoechst Pharma/HMR (today: Sanofi), and AgrEvo/Aventis CropScience (today: Bayer) at sites in Germany and Japan. Sven is now based in Boston.