Grow Your
Medical Business
in Kobe

We help international medical businesses thrive in Japan
with our world-class research institutes and facilities.

Japan's Medical Market

  • Pharmaceutical

    Japan's pharmaceutical market is the 4th largest in the world, with an annual sales volume of about 10 trillion yen. 90% of the market is for pharmaceutical products and the remaining 10% is for OTC drugs. In terms of therapeutic drug development, Japan is focusing on diseases with high unmet medical needs such as cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, and renal diseases.

    Looking at the players in the Japanese biopharmaceutical market, more than 70% of the approved biopharmaceuticals are foreign companies, and they are leading the market.

  • Medical Device & Equipment

    Today, Japan remains the second biggest medical market in the world, and is constantly growing. Import products, particularly therapeutic devices, share a big part of this market, and with an increased aging society and shortage of medical and welfare professionals, business opportunities continue to present themselves.

    The Japanese government continues to stress the importance of prioritizing the acquisition of surgical support robots, artificial tissues/organs, minimally invasive treatment, imaging diagnostics, and other home medical devices.

  • Regenerative Medicine

    Japan is leading the charge when it comes to the clinical application of regenerative medicine using iPS cells. Especially in the Kansai region of Japan, clinical applications of regenerative medicine to various tissues and organs, such as blood vessels in the lower limbs, cornea, eardrum, vocal cords, and knee cartilage, are being promoted, with the aim of creating early practical application of regenerative medicine.

  • Healthcare

    As the older population surges, there’s been a focus on extending healthy life expectancy. Business opportunities are rapidly increasing in the fields of prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of lifestyle-related diseases, as well as nursing care prevention and lifestyle support.

We've got everything
you need to
prosper and grow in Japan.

Our Advantages

  • 1
  • One Stop Solution
    for Medical Businesses

We support businesses every step of the way, ranging from the point of a scientific discovery to the release of a commercial medical product with strengths in pharmaceuticals, medical devices, regenerative medicine and healthcare.

  • Setting up a business in Japan

    Medical Product Development

  • 2
  • Access to All the Necessary Resource
    for Medical Organizations

With our 15+ full time dedicated coordinators with a variety of medical related backgrounds, we provide you with all the necessary resources and supports both in Japanese and English to accelerate your business.

  • 370 approx. KBIC member SMEs, Mega Pharmas and organizations
  • 8 highly specialized medical institutions and hospitals
  • RIKEN and other world-class research institutions and universities
  • 2,320+ Healthcare
    citizen supporters
  • 70+ international bio-clusters / organization network
  • 17 Affordable
    Wet & Dry Lab Spaces
  • The world’s top-class Supercomputer:
  • PMDA

    (Japan's regulatory agency for pharmaceuticals and medical devices) On-site Consultation

  • 3
  • Competitive
    Incentives & Grants

As a leader in advancing biomedical technology and healthcare, we offer a variety of incentives and grants for international companies to set up businesses in Kobe.

Case Studies


The Challenge

Progenicyte Japan is a biotech venture established in January, 2020. Progenicyte Japan is developing therapies for Alzheimer's and other diseases by dramatically increasing the number of stem cells in the body with peripheral administration of drugs and differentiating them into the target cells. Initially, Progenicyte Japan was at a loss as Progenicyte Japan had no experience or connection in drug development and had to learn the process from scratch.

The Solution

The experienced coordinators at KBIC navigated through the drug development process and created opportunities for learning, such as introducing people with specialized knowledge in each process. KBIC promoted collaboration by giving support, such as guidance on how to make a good presentation of our technologies, introducing related companies, and providing many opportunities to present.

The Results

While the road to drug discovery development is still in progress and there is still so much to learn, Progenicyte Japan successfully developed valuable connections and conducted joint research in various fields.

With the opening of the Creative Lab and support from the Kobe Life Science Gap Fund, Progenicyte Japan is conducting epoch-making DDS research to destroy cancer stem cells and discover the cure for COVID-19.

"We are very grateful for KBIC. We couldn't have come this far without them."

Kiminobu SugayaCEO, Progenicyte Japan

Bayer Yakuhin, Ltd.

The Challenge

In recent years, open innovation, in which pharmaceutical companies, universities and other research institutes, and startup companies combine their knowledge and technologies to facilitate drug discovery research, has been gaining momentum worldwide in order to develop innovative therapeutics. In this context, the importance of startup ecosystem as a source of innovation is increasing in Japan as well, and there is an urgent need to foster and support life science startup companies.

The Solution

In June 2018, Bayer opened CoLaborator Kobe, a unique incubation facility for supporting university-originated research and startup companies to create new innovations, for the first time in Japan after the United States and Germany. In addition, in February 2019, Bayer signed an agreement with the city of Kobe and the Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe to establish a cooperative framework for fostering and supporting startup businesses in the life science field and the establishment of a startup ecosystem in the Kobe Biomedical Innovation Cluster (KBIC).

The Results

CoLaborator Kobe has been home to a total of four life science startup companies to date and has led to collaboration and interaction with Bayer R&D. In addition, Bayer is working with the City of Kobe and the Kobe Biomedical Innovation Cluster to vitalize the startup ecosystem in Kobe through events such as accelerator programs and pitch events. Bayer will continue “ecosystem engagement activities”, leveraging its location in KBIC.

CF approval number: PP-OTH-JP-0498-21-09

The Largest Biocluster Community in Japan

KBIC, the largest biomedical cluster in Japan, is the innovation arm of the City of Kobe to foster innovation and collaboration among its members and affiliates to ensure a thriving biomedical industry.

We currently boast a concentrated network of approx. 370 companies, universities and research institutes, and specialized hospitals. Our corporate members range from promising startups, such as Bio Palette, to leading multinational healthcare giants, such as Boehringer Ingelheim.

Supported by ITIC

Get in touch

At KBIC, we’ve got the answers to your questions about investing in Japan, and lots of reasons why you’ll want to locate your business in Kobe. We look forward to introducing you to all of the opportunities that KBIC has to offer.

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