Business Development & Licensing

Business Development

Globalizing Business

Globally, developed countries are aging and emerging countries are undergoing population growth, generating further unmet medical needs. This means that the global pharmaceutical market is set to continue its growth path. ONO is striding forward in a drive to achieve its vision of becoming a Global Specialty Pharma company in competing in the global arena.

Promotion of Business in Asia

As a beachhead to expand revenue sources into overseas markets, we have been reinforcing overseas business expansion starting in Asia. We established wholly owned subsidiaries, ONO PHARMA KOREA CO., LTD. (OPKR) in South Korea in 2013 and ONO PHARMA TAIWAN CO., LTD. (OPTW) in Taiwan in 2014. The subsidiaries have since launched their own marketing and have demonstrated steady progress.
We have obtained approval for anticancer drug OPDIVO for additional indications not only in Japan but also in the rest of the world. The drug has been approved for 7 and 9 types of cancer in South Korea and in Taiwan respectively (as of June 2019). To significantly contribute to advancement in cancer therapy in South Korea and Taiwan, we also put efforts into safety measures by, e.g., rolling out scientific activities countrywide with Japanese and Western doctors appointed as lecturers to promote proper drug use. In addition, we conduct information dissemination activities not only on a countrywide level but also on a small-scale, locally-focused level to bring a fresh sensitivity to both markets as part of efforts to become the market leader in oncology in Asia.
We have also established a division within our Head Office that is in charge of planning operations in South Korea and Taiwan and expansion into other Asian markets. In close cooperation with the locally incorporated subsidiaries, the division investigates issues and develop overseas business strategies.

Business Expansion into the US and Europe

We have pursued in-licensing of new drug candidates developed in-house to deliver them to healthcare settings outside Japan, except in South Korea and Taiwan, where we have our own sales organization in place. Currently, however, we are establishing a system to sell our drugs on our own, also in the US and Europe, the world’s largest markets.
To market globally on our own, we have to set up local centers for clinical development and build a structure that ensures that we can perform clinical development and apply for approval by ourselves. In April 2019, we transferred the functions of the Global Clinical Development Division from Japan to our US subsidiary ONO PHARMA USA, INC. (OPUS). We will pursue organizational improvements that enable us to conduct clinical trials in the US and Europe and conduct application for approval through consultation with the regulators.
For business launch in the US and Europe, we intend to market in-house developed products in disease domains that do not require a large-scale sales force. We will sell such new drugs with efficacy and safety expected superior to those of the competition. Among our current pipelines, we consider, as global development pipelines, compounds under development to treat acute leukemia or intractable diseases with physical changes or metabolic abnormalities due to growth hormone hypersecretion, so that we can deliver new drugs to patients worldwide.
We continue upgrading our drug development infrastructure in Japan, the rest of Asia, the US, and Europe to strengthen and speed up our global development system.