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In an announcement to the NZX yesterday, chairman Chris Gallaher said Mr Darling’s expertise, persistence, and perseverance in the face of challenges over a long period of time had marked him as an "outstanding CEO".
“During his tenure, Pacific Edge has grown from a research concept to a fully-fledged commercial entity, well positioned to deliver the global growth potential of its technology.
"Dave has been the driving contributor to the development and execution of Pacific Edge’s global strategy and led the achievement of major commercial milestones in a highly competitive global market," Mr Gallaher said.
Pacific Edge is a cancer diagnostics company, specialising in discovering, building and commercialising innovative cancer diagnostic tests.
Its products were built from its proprietary genetic databases which were used to identify diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers for cancer. Its commercial focus at the moment was on bladder cancer products.
Mr Darling said it was the right time to begin the process of succession.
“It has been a great privilege to have worked with such an outstanding team over the past 18 years, all of whom share the same passion for delivering better ways to diagnose and monitor cancer," he said.
Last week, the company shares spiked after the company said one of its cancer diagnostic tests, Cxbladder, was now being covered by United Healthcare, America’s biggest healthcare insurer.
On Friday, the stock traded at $1.30, up 32c or 31.3% on Thursday’s close.
The board would begin a formal recruitment process. Following his retirement, Mr Darling would continue to support the company in a consulting role.