In October 2017, Takeda exhibited as a platinum sponsor at Bio Japan 2017, the bio industry’s largest partnering event in Asia. To accelerate open innovation across bio industries, over 1,000 organizations from 32 countries gathered to host exhibitions, seminars and partnering programs with more than 15,000 visitors.
At the event, which brought many global stakeholders together, the business concept of Shonan Health Innovation Park was shared. This ambitious cross-sector project is targeted to become Japan’s first innovative ecosystem led by pharmaceutical companies, based on the drug discovery expertise nurtured by Takeda, and bringing together key players involved in health innovation from industry, government, and academia. Providing access to state-of-the-art technology and specialist knowledge in the field of life sciences, the park will serve as a catalyst to accelerate innovation and ideas, with the goal of developing ground-breaking treatments for the benefit of patients not only in Japan but around the world.
Takeda has been actively promoting open innovation through Shonan Research Center, including the establishment of an incubation laboratory. T-CiRA, a research unit founded in collaboration with Kyoto University’s Center for iPS Cell Research and Application (CiRA), is a prime example of a partnership at this location.
The company also aims to become the optimal research and development partner for a wide range of organizations such as universities & research institutes, businesses, start-up ventures, etc., and has formed more than 70 R&D partnerships in little more than two years.
During the event, a luncheon seminar was held in which Corporate Officer Haruhiko Hirate talked about the importance of founding an ecosystem in Japan and future visions for the Park. Subsequently, Yoshinori Ikeura, president of Axcelead, a partner in the Innovation Park, and founders of two external partner organizations confirmed to be joining Shonan Health Innovation Park, K Pharma’s founding scientist, Hideyuki Okano MD, PhD, and Noile-Immune Biotech founder, chief scientific & medical officer Koji Tamada MD, PhD, also shared their business plans.
Hirate voiced his aspirations, saying, "Shonan Health Innovation Park provides an environment where researchers can immerse themselves in research from day one. To fuel further innovation, organic collaborations between various players, such as venture companies and research institutes at universities, are indispensable. In the future, when researchers and stakeholders are gathered together on a scale of thousands, the virtuous cycle of people's hard work and friendly competition will enhance the level of research in Shonan. We are also working on creating a system to provide investment support for new projects that start here, and in preparation for establishing a research investment fund, we are seeking diversified investors beyond just Takeda."
"Takeda is putting its full support behind the official launch of this Park, in order to build an ecosystem in Japan that is a catalyst for public-private partnership, inviting human resources and investment from all over the world, and to help Japan be active as an innovative nation and a leader in health innovation, in Asia and worldwide.”