Meet Kristian Hart-Hansen – CEO of LEO Innovation Lab

LEO Innovation Lab is an independent unit, established by LEO Pharma as part of a long-term strategic decision to focus on patient’s needs.

LEO Innovation Lab has been established as a separate entity to create a smaller, more agile organization, where innovation can thrive and solutions be brought to market and tested faster.

As LEO Pharma is owned entirely by the LEO Foundation and has no shareholders, its profits are reinvested in developing new solutions to support the overall mission: To help individuals achieve healthy skin. This unique ownership structure has made it possible to establish LEO Innovation Lab with no profit requirements – just a goal of making a difference to people living with psoriasis.

We wanted to find out more about how LEO Innovation Lab are investing in new solutions to help patients and their CEO – Kristian Hart-Hansen kindly gave us the opportunity to ask some questions.

Kristian Hart-Hansen

LEO Innovation Lab CEO  – Kristian Hart-Hansen

SD – Hi, could you please introduce yourself?

KHH – My name is Kristian Hart-Hansen and I am CEO of LEO Innovation Lab, where the team and I work to find and develop new solutions that can improve the lives of people with skin diseases. Look at my LinkedIn profile (  for more info.

SD – Where are you based?

KHH – We have satellites in central Copenhagen, London, Paris and Toronto and work with partner organisations all over the world. I myself am based in Copenhagen.

SD – What is your background?

KHH – I am a health economist and have worked for Danish healthcare companies LEO Pharma and Coloplast with health economics, medical affairs and global marketing. Before I started LEO Innovation Lab, I headed the LEO Pharma affiliate in Spain for three and a half years.

Having spent fourteen years in the industry, I have seen how important it is for healthcare companies to become less conservative and to focus more on patient needs – and focusing creating digital solutions is a key feature in this.

SD – Tell us about LEO Innovation Lab and the background to the organisation?

We know that living with a skin disease affects many other aspects of patients’ lives beyond medication – LEO Pharma has extensive experience in developing pharmaceutical products, and now we want to help people living with skin diseases in other areas of their everyday lives. We don’t create pharmaceutical products, but focus on all the areas of patients’ lives that can impact their wellbeing such as stress, diet, nutrition, family, fitness, beauty and relationship with the doctor.

LEO Innovation Lab has been established as part of LEO Pharma’s long-term decision to focus on the needs of people living with skin diseases; even if there is no immediate financial gain. This does not mean that we see helping people as a contradiction to driving a sustainable business – in LEO Pharma, we do not help patients to make money; we make money to help patients.

SD – What are your growth plans in the UK and also Europe?

KHH – We launch global solutions, this means that our focus lies where the market conditions give us the most optimal starting point for a successful pilot, be it with regards to the adoption of new technologies, payer structures, HCP’s or patients. We have already launched 3 solutions in UK, US, Canada and Spain: the app Treat ( that helps people living with skin diseases stick to a healthy diet; Alba’s Post ( , an online platform that provides nutritional information to people with psoriasis ; InTouch that facilitates contact with the dermatologist and SkinTech ( a cooperation with YouTube bloggers to create awareness about psoriasis.

LIL Team

LEO Innovation Lab Team

SD – What do you see as your biggest challenges for LEO Innovation Lab?

KHH – Our biggest challenge is to create solutions that really make a difference to people with skin diseases. Other than that, at major challenge – for us and for anyone else working with data – is to actually put big data to work. The data we are able to collect at this point can help us improve treatments to the benefit of the patients. But in the healthcare sector, there is a myriad of laws and regulations that make this much more difficult than in most other sectors. We need to solve the challenge of being personal and relevant in our offerings while still handling data in accordance with legislation. But apart from that, we have the same challenges that most companies do – to engage people long term at a reasonable cost.

SD – What do you see the Healthcare Technology landscape being in 2020?

KHH – Right now, the e-health space is incredibly interesting. There is a lot going on, both in incremental innovation, where healthcare companies optimize their existing business, as well as in radical innovation; where they look beyond the existing business – and in 2020 we will really be seeing the results from this.

By then, the radical innovation will have resulted in an increased focus on Big Data – specifically machine learning and AI – as well as on Quantified Self; the use of wearables and self-monitoring apps to gather information about one’s own health.

These technologies will enable us to develop prediction models for informing patients of incidents or coalitions between events, which might influence their condition.

This also means that we will be seeing more digitally integrated solutions – a lot of the medicines prescribed will in some way be digitally integrated with the patient or the HCP.

Other than that, we will see some significant changes in the way health insurances are structured – most likely, the cost of a person’s insurance will be much more dependent on how healthy a lifestyle they lead and how well they follow the treatment regime.

SD – How do people find our more information?

KHH – By visiting our website, or following us on LinkedIn or Twitter – and on, and

SD – thanks for your time

LEO Innovation Lab are currently hiring !!  If you are interested in working with Kristian and the team check out all the current vacancies on our jobs page


Paul Budd

Co-Founder and Business Development Director

Paul is an experienced sales & marketing leader within the healthcare sector and is a Co-Founder of Salus Digital. He is a Digital Health enthusiast with a passion for extending the reach of technology to improve patient’s lives and reduce the strain on healthcare services.

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