COVID-19 vaccine - The journey so far and challenges ahead

Tuesday, February 16, 2021
17:00 to 18:00


50.00/ P.P.

Member price


For this online event, we will be asking crucial questions to the representatives of AmCham Belgium’s member companies which are playing a key role in the fight against COVID-19. Join us for a briefing on the COVID-19 vaccine with:

  • Anne-Laure Dreno, Country President Belgium and Luxembourg at AstraZeneca
  • Karel Van De Sompel, Country Manager & Managing Director at Pfizer Belgium & Luxembourg
  • Jean Lang, Associate Vice President R&D Global Health Partnerships at Sanofi Pasteur 

The discussion will be moderated by Antoine Mialhe, Head of Healthcare & Life Sciences at FTI Consulting Brussels.

We will be asking questions about: 

  • Development: the main stages of vaccine development and testing, and the actors involved
  • Production: the challenges related to the production and Belgium’s role
  • Distribution and application: the logistics and criteria of distribution, with  a focus on how Belgium is performing and what can we expect in the months to come


  • Anne-Laure Dreno, AstraZeneca

    Anne-Laure Dreno, AstraZeneca

    Anne-Laure Dreno is Country President of AstraZeneca Belgium & Luxemburg since June 2019, returning to Belgium after 4 years in the US where she was Vice-President Global Marketing for Respiratory inhaled products. She has 14 years’ experience in the pharmaceutical industry in different commercial roles both locally and internationally. Prior to joining AstraZeneca in 2006, she worked as a consultant in strategy for a broad range of industries from media to consumer goods and started her career as Project Engineer in the drinking water industry with Suez Lyonnaise des Eaux in Paris.

  • Karen Van De Sompel

    Karel Van De Sompel, Pfizer

    Graduated as a licentiate in physiotherapy, Karel started in 1983 at the company Byk Golden (now Altana). After three years, he moved to Pfizer where he took up various management positions within the Sales and Marketing department. In 2001 his career took a turn and he moved abroad with his wife and children to take an executive position within Pfizer Canada. Afterward, he led the European marketing brand teams from Karlsruhe and London. In 2008 he was appointed Vice President Marketing for Europe and Canada. After about eleven years abroad, Karel returned to Belgium on February 1, 2012 to take up the position of Managing Director. He combined this position with a position as Business Unit Head Oncology for Belgium and Luxembourg. On March 1, 2014, Karel took the position of Business Unit Head 'Global Innovative Pharma', which he will combine with his position as Managing Director for Pfizer NV. Karel is a member of the board, LAWG and the Health, Science & Technology Group and has more than thirty years of experience as a leader in the pharmaceutical industry. He holds a master's degree in physiotherapy from the Catholic University of Leuven and an INSEAD Business Management degree. Karel is 53 years old and lives in Bertem, together with his wife Marijke and their four children (three sons and a daughter).

  • Jean Lang

    Jean Lang, Sanofi

    Jean Lang was awarded his MD (1983) and PhD in Human Biology, Pharmacology (1987) by the Lyon I University, France. He started his Research & Development (R&D) Career within the Pharmaceutical Industry in 1988 before joining Sanofi Pasteur R&D in 1991. He participated to the SARS Vaccine partnered with US NIH in 2004 and the West Nile vaccine US epidemic responses in 2006. He is involved in the current COVID-19 outbreak Vaccine preparedness and response ie US BMGF, UK W. Trust, French/European R&D PPPs (BPI, H2020 IMI2, EIB) & Low Middle Income Coutries CEPI. From 1995 to 2014 his main R&D focus was Dengue. He led a cross-functional expert team of analytical scientists, virologists, immunologists, epidemiologists, clinical developers, industrial manufacturing experts & regulatory affairs specialists. In this endeavor, he contributed to establish ~50 R&D partnerships with public health and academic laboratories on Dengue diseases. Since 2014 he has led a variety of R&D-focused Public Private Global Health driven projects (e.g., HIV Malaria, ETEC, Zika, rabies, and yellow fever). He co-leads the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation /Sanofi Pasteur Vaccine Discovery Partnerships a joint R&D Alliance with the Gates Foundation since 2014. He maintains regular contact with the US Biomedical Advanced Research and Development and the US Department of Defense. He is closely associated to the Covid19 Vaccine to vaccination ecosystem (eg SP Protein and mRNA  technologies) and the R&D global external scientific networks : Europe, France & Covax (CEPI, GAVI, WHO) related.

  • Antoine Mialhe

    Moderated by Antoine Mialhe, FTI Consulting Brussels

    Antoine is a Managing Director and heads the Healthcare and life sciences practice at FTI Consulting Brussels. Antoine has been running the practice for four years and his team currently supports over 20 clients with their government relations and communication strategies across Europe. Clients include leading biotechs, big pharmas, medical devices companies as well as trade associations. Lately, Antoine and his team have been supporting two biotech companies in securing Covid-19 vaccines deals with the European Commission. Before joining FTI Consulting, Antoine worked for eight years at the European Commission on EU legislations, policies and programmes targeting the life sciences sector. He contributed to the launch of the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI), a €5 billion public-private partnership between the EU and EFPIA, and the SME instrument, a €3 billion programme supporting emerging and fast-growing biotechs. In this role, he also contributed to EU legislations such as on Health Technology Assessment (HTA). Prior to joining the European Commission, Antoine spent two years in academia developing one of the first crowdfunding platforms aimed at selecting and supporting innovative ideas and entrepreneurship after starting his career at KPMG as a management consultant.  Antoine is a native French speaker, fluent in English with functional German.