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JungJin SEO

EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™ 2023 Judge

Honorary Chairman, Celltrion Group, South Korea

JungJin SEO is looking to develop the antidote to expensive health care.

Photographic portrait of JungJin SEO

JungJin SEO knew very little about science before founding what is now a multibillion-dollar global pharmaceutical company: Celltrion. Following the misfortune of losing his job at an automaker, JungJin seized the opportunity to pivot his career when he heard a scientist speak on the future of medicine. Today, Celltrion develops groundbreaking drugs to treat cancer, autoimmune diseases and COVID-19 pandemic.

JungJin led his team to develop biosimilars — affordable biologic products highly similar to approved biological drugs — that yield treatments that mimic the body’s natural antibodies. Celltrion launched its first biosimilar drug, Remsima, for the treatment of autoimmune diseases, followed by drugs for breast cancer and lymphoma that are now used worldwide.

The company led the field in developing an antibody treatment for COVID-19 pandemic, which was approved for use in South Korea in February 2021. Celltrion offers the treatment to Koreans at production cost.

Representing South Korea, JungJin was selected as EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year 2021.