Retiring Roche chairman joins Pappas Ventures

Durham venture capital firm Pappas Ventures has named Franz B. Humer, the retiring chairman of Roche Holding and a former CEO of the Swiss pharmaceutical giant, as a venture partner and senior advisor.

Humer is retiring as Roche’s chairman in March.

Art Pappas, managing partner of Pappas Ventures, issued a statement noting that throughout Humer’s career “he has consistently focused on the importance of innovation in creating products that can make a real difference to patients. He will be invaluable in helping us pursue this same vision.”

Humer, Pappas and Ernie Mario — also a venture partner at Pappas Ventures — worked together in the early 1990s at what is now GlaxoSmithKline, where they were senior executives and board members.

Pappas Ventures, founded in 1994, focuses on investing in life sciences businesses. It has more than $350 million in capital under management.