Noubar Afeyan

Noubar Afeyan

Managing Partner and CEO

Noubar Afeyan is founder, Managing Partner and CEO of Flagship Ventures, a leading early stage venture capital firm. He also leads the firm's VentureLabs unit that invents and launches transformative startups. He is a Senior Lecturer at MIT’s Sloan School of Management where he has taught courses on technology-entrepreneurship, innovation, and leadership since 2000. Dr. Afeyan has authored numerous scientific publications and patents since earning his Ph.D. in Biochemical Engineering from MIT in 1987. He lectures widely in the United States and internationally on diverse topics ranging from entrepreneurship, innovation and venture capital to biological engineering, drug discovery, medical technologies and renewable energy.

During his 25-year career as inventor, entrepreneur, CEO and venture capitalist, Dr. Afeyan has co-founded and helped build 26 successful life science and technology startups. He was founder and CEO of PerSeptive Biosystems, a leader in the bio-instrumentation field that grew to over $100M in annual sales within six years from its first sales. After PerSeptive's acquisition by Perkin Elmer/Applera Corporation in 1998, he was Senior Vice President and Chief Business Officer of Applera, where he initiated and oversaw the creation of Celera Genomics.

Currently Dr. Afeyan serves on a number of public and private company boards including Affinnova, BG Medicine, Eleven Biotherapeutics, Joule Unlimited, Moderna Therapeutics, Pronutria and Seres Health. Previously, he was a member of the founding team, director and investor in several highly successful ventures including Chemgenics Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Millennium Pharmaceuticals), Color Kinetics (acquired by Philips), and Adnexus Therapeutics (acquired by Bristol-Myers Squibb).

Dr. Afeyan received a Technology Pioneer 2012 award from the World Economic Forum in recognition of the breakthrough solar fuel technology being developed at Joule Unlimited. He currently serves as Chairman of the Global Agenda Council on Emerging Technologies of the World Economic Forum. He is a member of the Board of Overseers of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. In addition, he is co-founder and board member of the National Competitiveness Foundation of Armenia, a private-public partnership to promote economic development in the former Soviet Republic of Armenia, and he serves on the board of AmeriaBank, a leading bank in Armenia. In 2008 he received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, an award granted to outstanding Americans who have distinguished themselves as United States citizens and who have enabled their ancestry groups to maintain their identities while becoming integral parts of American life.

Current Investments

  • BG Medicine, Inc.
  • BIND Therapeutics, Inc.
  • Eleven Biotherapeutics, Inc.
  • Ensemble Therapeutics Corporation
  • Joule Unlimited, Inc.
  • Midori
  • Moderna
  • Pronutria
  • Seres Health
  • Syros Pharmaceuticals