San Diego’s largest law firm announced this week that Kenneth Weixel has joined Procopio Business Advisors (PBA), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Procopio law firm, in the newly created position of senior growth advisor.
Weixel, a veteran life sciences and healthcare industry leader, will play “a deep support role in a non-legal capacity,” said John Alessio, Procopio’s managing partner.
In his new role, Weixel, the former managing partner at Deloitte in San Diego, will advise and assist Procopio’s expanding life sciences team, providing strategic guidance as Procopio continues to support the biotech, pharmaceutical and medical device ecosystem throughout California.
Weixel has decades of experience working with life sciences and healthcare companies of all sizes and in all stages of growth as a trusted advisor on corporate governance, M&A; and transparent financial reporting.
Longtime Biocom Board Member
Joe Panetta, CEO at Biocom California, said Weixel will help Procopio engage at a deeper level with San Diego area biotech and life sciences companies.
Weixel sat on the Biocom board for six years and was a key member of the nonprofit’s finance committee.
“Ken’s helped me and our organization a lot,” Panetta said. “I’m not a finance guy and he’s guided me tremendously in that area. He’s the kind of board member who is actively engaged. He’s so knowledgeable and experienced working with biotech and medical device companies. He brings that extra energy and punch.”
A native of Columbus, Ohio, during a distinguished career with Deloitte, Weixel built a stellar reputation as a “connector,” “relationship builder” and deal maker while working closely with many of the country’s largest law firms and leading private equity and venture capital players. He also served in a number of key leadership positions at Deloitte and helped grow the firm’s life sciences and healthcare-related M&A; practices.
“This is a great fit for me,” Weixel said this week. “Procopio is a very entrepreneurial firm – and they’re not afraid to take risks. I know I can add value and am just thrilled to be here.”
Alessio said the addition of the veteran industry executive will raise Procopio’s profiles in both life sciences and M&A.; “Ken is going to be a true value. He’s really going to help us bring more awareness to what Procopio has to offer.”
“Procopio has assembled what I think are the best and brightest attorneys and professionals to assist the life science community,” Alessio added. “When Ken became available, we jumped at the opportunity. He is in a unique position to spot opportunities, create synergies and forge partnerships — not only for Procopio but more importantly, for our clients.”
PBA provides clients with business and management services. Weixel, a certified public accountant, will be responsible for the direction and development of non-legal consulting projects for new and existing PBA clients with an emphasis on projects involving finance, governance, risk and M&A.;
PBA also supports area tech startups with its LaunchPad, an incubator program founded in 2012.
Renewed Focus on LaunchPad
“John (Alessio) and I are going to take a fresh look at LaunchPad,” Weixel said. “I feel like a kid in a candy store. I can’t wait to get started. Professional services are all about relationships,” he added. “And I have a good network in town.”
Procopio has an active life sciences practice, representing leading innovators in securing critical intellectual property, recruiting investors and capital, obtaining licensing deals and conducting M&A; transactions.
Procopio’s LaunchPad incubator program operates out of the firm’s Del Mar Heights office in the heart of San Diego County’s life sciences region.
Weixel said the local life sciences sector has never been bigger – and more active. “Forget about the Bay Area and places like Boston,” he said. “In life sciences right now, San Diego is where people want to be.”
When Weixel took the reins of Deloitte’s San Diego office in 2014, tasked with expanding the firm’s life sciences practice, Deloitte grew from 200 to more than 450 employees – and became the largest accounting firm in San Diego.
Weixel, who officially came onboard at PBA on Jan. 1, has had a chance to get more familiar with the firm’s operations and calls Procopio’s life science team “top notch” and “well positioned to grow.”
“I only retired last year because of Deloitte’s mandatory [retirement-age] policies,” Weixel said. “But honestly, after I played enough rounds of golf, it didn’t take me long to figure out I wasn’t very good at retirement.”
Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves and Savitch LLP
Founded: 1946 (by Alec Cory)
Managing Partner: John Alessio
Headquarters: Procopio Tower, Downtown San Diego
Notable: Company also has offices in Del Mar Heights, Silicon Valley, Orange County, Las Vegas and Scottsdale.