Why Japan? 2017 Life Sciences Opportunities

June’s program was held at JETRO NY. To download the event summary, click here.

NYPF’s June 2017 program was held in partnership with JETRO NY (Japan External Trade Organization) and was a special program for biopharma industry executives interested in learning more about the Japanese life sciences market, market entry, or partnership opportunities with Japanese life sciences companies.

The program highlighted current market and regulatory realities in Japan, explored cross-border deal-making opportunities, and identified best practices for successful collaboration.

Topics included:

  • The Japanese market today, the state of its economy and business environment
  • Cross-border, deal-making trends in the life science sector
  • Updates on the Japanese regulatory environment and pricing
  • Tips and case studies on how to successfully enter the Japanese life science market.


Andy Shartzer, Business Development Representative, JETRO New York
Mr. Shartzer is a Business Development Representative at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), a governmental non-profit organization under the Ministry of Economy with the mission to promote trade and investment between Japan and the rest of the world. Andy supports U.S. companies who are expanding their business to Japan, specializing in the life science sector. He also actively promotes JETRO at various networking events, meetings, seminars, and conferences to increase awareness both of JETRO’s complimentary services and the attractiveness of opening a business in/expanding to Japan. Andy is from Washington, DC and previously spent 2 years living and working in Japan. He has a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Virginia.


Kenjiro Watanabe, Director of Business Development, JETRO New York
Mr. Watanabe is the Director of Business Development at JETRO New York, Japan’s Governmental Agency that promotes mutual trade and investment between Japan and the rest of the world. He has been at JETRO for over 10 years and has supported small startups and large corporations in a variety of industries, including the life science sector, trying to expand their business abroad. He is currently focused on promoting Foreign Direct Investment from the U.S. into Japan and works closely with the Bio-Industry division of the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry to promote Japan’s growing regenerative medicine industry.
He earned his B.A. in Foreign Studies at Sophia University.


Daisuke J. Nakajima, Managing Director, Partner, Evercore ISI
Mr. Nakajima is a Managing Director and leads Evercore ISI’s Japan Research team. He is responsible for analyzing and estimating various US economic indicators as well as monitoring economic developments in Japan. Prior to joining Evercore ISI, Mr. Nakajima spent 2 years in the economic research department at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
Mr. Nakajima received an AB from Brown University in 2003 and received an MA from Columbia University in 2004.


Eric Jacobs, Managing Director, Healthcare / M&A, Nomura Securities
Mr. Jacobs is a Managing Director at Nomura focusing on Healthcare and Healthcare M&A. He has nearly 20 years of investment banking and legal experience. He came to Nomura from RBC, where he was Head of Healthcare M&A. Previously, he was a Managing Director at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, and prior to that, a Director at Citigroup. Before his career in finance, he practiced corporate law at Simpson Thacher.
He has advised on over 100 mandated transactions accounting for over $100B in value.
He received a J.D., summa cum laude, from Cornell Law School, an MBA from Cornell Business School as well as a BA from Emory University.


Hiroyuki Kawabata, Director of Health and Welfare Dept. JETRO New York; and Representative of the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare
Mr. Kawabata is the 10th director of JETRO’s Health & Welfare Department (The first director founded the NYPF). Mr. Kawabata has held a wide variety of positions at the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare in areas such as disability welfare policy, job creation policy, and child rearing support policy. He also served the Parliamentary Vice-minister of Health, Labour and Welfare (a member of the House of Councilors) as secretary and handled the deliberation of numerous bills in the Department.

Mr. Kawabata has worked in pharmaceutical industrial development and participated in the creation of government growth strategy for the pharmaceutical industry. Additionally, he worked on a bill which became the foundation for regulations on regenerative medicine. As deputy director of the section, he played a role in overseeing the allocation of medical supplies to disaster areas during the time of the Eastern Japan Great Earthquake.