List of top 40 pharmaceutical companies in Japan

The pharmaceutical companies in Japan have shown low growth rates in recent years. A complex pricing and regulatory process and regular price reductions have made it difficult for pharmaceutical companies to introduce innovative new products.

Another reason for the market stagnation is the promotion of generic drugs introduced by the government in 2007 to reduce healthcare spending in Japan.

Generic stock volume has more than doubled over the past decade and continues to grow.

Domestic Pharmaceutical Market in Japan

Alongside the burgeoning generic drug market, the projected transformation of Japan’s pharmaceutical industry will be fueled by the increased use of biosimilars, which are expected to be the fastest-growing sector in the future with a variety of products under development.

With many drug patents expiring, Japanese companies are being forced to adapt to a changing market environment.

However, the Japanese pharmaceutical industry remains one of the largest with a share of around seven percent of the world market. Although the market in Japan is in a state of upheaval, it offers a wide range of opportunities and potential for growth.

The aging society and the increasing life expectancy have led to high demand for medical treatment and will be a key factor for future developments.

In addition, the Japanese government is working to reduce the lengthy new product approval processes that pharmaceutical companies face, which will also have the positive effect of attracting foreign companies.

Not only international companies looking to invest in the Japanese market but also Japan’s growing pharmaceutical exports will help strengthen the pharmaceutical industry.

Pharmaceutical Companies in Japan

Here is a list of some of the pharmaceutical companies operating in Japan:

  • ASTELLAS PHARMA INC.

Address: 2-5-1, NIHOMBASHIHONCHO CHUO-KU, TOKYO, 103-0023 Japan

Phone: +81-332443000

Revenue: $11.88 billion

Year Started: 1923 Incorporated: 1939

  • ASTRAZENECA K.K.

Address: 3-1, OFUKACHO, KITA-KU GRAND FRONT OSAKA TOWER B 19F. OSAKA, OSAKA, 530-0011 Japan

Phone: +81-648023600

Year Started: 1975 Incorporated: 1975

  • BASF JAPAN LTD.

Address: 3-4-4, NIHOMBASHIMUROMACHI OVOL NIHOMBASHI BLDG. 3F. CHUO-KU, TOKYO, 103-0022 Japan

Phone: +81-352903000

Website: visit here

Year Started: 1949 Incorporated: 1949

  • BAYER YAKUHIN, LTD.

Address: 2-4-9, UMEDA, KITA-KU BREEZE TOWER OSAKA, OSAKA, 530-0001 Japan

Phone: +81-661337000

Year Started: 1973 Incorporated: 1973

  • CHUGAI PHARMACEUTICAL CO., LTD.

Address: 2-1-1, NIHOMBASHIMUROMACHI NIHOMBASHI MITSUI TOWER CHUO-KU, TOKYO, 103-0022 Japan

Phone: +81-332816611

Website: click here

Revenue: $7.54 billion

Year Started: 1925 Incorporated: 1943

  • DAIICHI SANKYO COMPANY, LIMITED

Address: 3-5-1, NIHOMBASHIHONCHO DAIICHI SANKYO HONSHA BLDG. CHUO-KU, TOKYO, 103-0023 Japan

Phone: +81-362251111

Website: visit

Revenue: $9.15 billion

Year Started: 1899 Incorporated: 2005

  • EARTH CORPORATION

Address: 2-12-1, KANDATSUKASAMACHI CHIYODA-KU, TOKYO, 101-0048 Japan

Phone: +81-352077451

Website: visit here

Revenue: $1.88 billion

Year Started: 1892 Incorporated: 1925

  • EISAI CO., LTD.

Address: 4-6-10, KOISHIKAWA BUNKYO-KU, TOKYO, 112-0002 Japan

Phone: +81-338173700

Website: visit here

Revenue: $6.14 billion

Year Started: 1936 Incorporated: 1941

  • ELI LILLY JAPAN K.K.

Address: 5-1-28, ISOGAMIDORI, CHUO-KU LILLY PLAZA ONE BLDG. KOBE, HYOGO, 651-0086 Japan

Phone: +81-782429000

Website: click here

Year Started: 1965 Incorporated: 1975

  • FUJI YAKUHIN CO.,LTD.

Address: 2-292-1, SAKURAGICHO, OMIYA-KU SHOUEIDAISAN BLDG. SAITAMA, SAITAMA, 330-0854 Japan

Phone: +81-486443240

Website: click here

Year Started: 1930 Incorporated: 1954

  • GLAXOSMITHKLINE K.K.

Address: 1-8-1, AKASAKA AKASAKA INTERCITY AIR 16F. MINATO-KU, TOKYO, 107-0052 Japan

Phone: +81-342315000

Website: visit here

Year Started: 1953 Incorporated: 1953

  • JANSSEN PHARMACEUTICAL K.K.

Address: 3-5-2, NISHIKANDA CHIYODA FIRST BLDG. CHIYODA-KU, TOKYO, 101-0065 Japan

Phone: +81-344117700

Website: click here

Year Started: 1978 Incorporated: 1978

  • KANEKA CORPORATION

Address: 2-3-18, NAKANOSHIMA, KITA-KU NAKANOSHIMA FESTIVAL TOWER OSAKA, OSAKA, 530-0005 Japan

Phone: +81-662265050

Website: click here

Revenue: $5.49 billion

Year Started: 1949 Incorporated: 1949

  • KOBAYASHI PHARMACEUTICAL CO., LTD.

Address: 4-4-10, DOSHOMACHI, CHUO-KU KDXKOBAYASHIDOSHOMACHI BLDG. OSAKA, OSAKA, 541-0045 Japan

Phone: +81-662311144

Website: visit here

Revenue: $1.44 billion

Year Started: 1886 Incorporated: 1919

  • KOWA COMPANY,LTD.

Address: 3-6-29, NISHIKI, NAKA-KU NAGOYA, AICHI, 460-0003 Japan

Phone: +81-529633311

Website: click here

Year Started: 1894 Incorporated: 1939

  • KYOWA KIRIN CO., LTD.

Address: 1-9-2, OTEMACHI OTEMACHI FINANCIALCITY GRAND CUBE CHIYODA-KU, TOKYO, 100-0004 Japan

Phone: +81-352057200

Website: visit here

Revenue: $3.05 billion

Year Started: 1937 Incorporated: 1949

  • MITSUBISHI TANABE PHARMA CORPORATION

Address: 3-2-10, DOSHOMACHI, CHUO-KU OSAKA, OSAKA, 541-0045 Japan

Phone: +81-662055085

Website: visit here

Revenue: $4.04 billion

Year Started: 1933 Incorporated: 1933

  • MSD K.K.

Address: 1-13-12, KUDANKITA KITANOMARU SQUARE CHIYODA-KU, TOKYO, 102-0073 Japan

Phone: +81-362721000

Year Started: 1959 Incorporated: 1959

  • NICHI-IKO PHARMACEUTICAL CO.,LTD.

Address: 1-6-21, SOGAWA TOYAMA, TOYAMA, 930-0083 Japan

Phone: +81-764322121

Website: click here

Revenue: $1.79 billion

Year Started: 1965 Incorporated: 1947

  • NIHON CIBA-GEIGY K.K.

Address: 1-23-1, TORANOMON TORANOMON HILLS MORI TOWER 31F. MINATO-KU, TOKYO, 105-0001 Japan

Phone: +81-368995993

Year Started: 1952 Incorporated: 1952

  • NIPPON KAYAKU CO., LTD.

Address: 2-1-1, MARUNOUCHI MEIJI YASUDA SEIMEI BLDG. 19F. 20F. CHIYODA-KU, TOKYO, 100-0005 Japan

Phone: +81-367315200

Website: Click Here

Year Started: 1916 Incorporated: 1916

  • NIPRO CORPORATION

Address: 3-9-3, HONJONISHI, KITA-KU OSAKA, OSAKA, 531-0073 Japan

Phone: +81-663722331

Website: click here

Revenue: $4.33 billion

Year Started: 1948 Incorporated: 1948

  • NISSAN CHEMICAL CORPORATION

Address: 2-5-1, NIHOMBASHI NIHOMBASHITAKASHIMAYA MITSUI BLDG. 18-19F. CHUO-KU, TOKYO, 103-0027 Japan

Phone: +81-344638111

Website: click here

Revenue: $1.99 billion

Year Started: 1887 Incorporated: 1921

  • NOF CORPORATION

Address: 4-20-3, EBISU EBISU GARDEN PLACE TOWER 19F. SHIBUYA-KU, TOKYO, 150-0013 Japan

Phone: +81-354246600

Revenue: $1.64 billion

Year Started: 1921 Incorporated: 1949

  • ONO PHARMACEUTICAL CO., LTD.

Address: 1-8-2, KYUTAROMACHI, CHUO-KU OSAKA, OSAKA, 541-0056 Japan

Phone: +81-662635670

Website: click here

Revenue: $2.94 billion

Year Started: 1947 Incorporated: 1947

  • OTSUKA PHARMACEUTICAL CO., LTD.

Address: 2-16-4, KONAN SHINAGAWA GRAND CENTRAL TOWER MINATO-KU, TOKYO, 108-0075 Japan

Phone: +81-367171400

Website: visit here

Year Started: 1921 Incorporated: 1964

  • PFIZER GLOBAL SUPPLY JAPAN INC.

Address: 3-22-7, YOYOGI SHINJUKU BUNKA QUINT BLDG. 18F. SHIBUYA-KU, TOKYO, 151-0053 Japan

Phone: +81-353097000

Year Started: 1953 Incorporated: 2011

  • ROHTO PHARMACEUTICAL CO., LTD.

Address: 1-8-1, TATSUMINISHI, IKUNO-KU OSAKA, OSAKA, 544-0012 Japan

Phone: +81-667581231

Website: click here

Revenue: $1.72 billion

Year Started: 1899 Incorporated: 1949

  • SANOFI K.K.

Address: 3-20-2, NISHISHINJUKU TOKYO OPERA CITY TOWER 47F. SHINJUKU-KU, TOKYO, 160-0023 Japan

Phone: +81-363013000

Year Started: 1976 Incorporated: 1976

  • SANTEN PHARMACEUTICAL CO., LTD.

Address: 4-20, OFUKACHO, KITA-KU GRAND FRONT OSAKA TOWER A OSAKA, OSAKA, 530-0011 Japan

Phone: +81-663217000

Website: visit here

Revenue: $2.37 billion

Year Started: 1890 Incorporated: 1925

  • SHIONOGI & CO., LTD.

Address: 3-1-8, DOSHOMACHI, CHUO-KU OSAKA, OSAKA, 541-0045 Japan

Phone: +81-662022161

Website: visit here

Revenue: $2.82 billion

Year Started: 1878 Incorporated: 1919

  • SHISEIDO COMPANY, LIMITED

Address: 7-5-5, GINZA CHUO-KU, TOKYO, 104-0061 Japan

Phone: +81-335725111

Website: visit

Revenue: $8.82 billion

Year Started: 1872 Incorporated: 1927

  • SUMITOMO DAINIPPON PHARMA CO., LTD.

Address: 2-6-8, DOSHOMACHI, CHUO-KU OSAKA, OSAKA, 541-0045 Japan

Phone: +81-662035321

Website: visit here

Revenue: $4.90 billion

Year Started: 1897 Incorporated: 1897

  • SYSMEX CORPORATION

Address: 1-5-1, WAKINOHAMAKAIGANDORI, CHUO-KU KOKUSAI KENKO KAIHATSU CENTER KOBE, HYOGO, 651-0073 Japan

Phone: +81-782650500

Website: visit here

Revenue: $2.90 billion

Year Started: 1968 Incorporated: 1978

  • TAISHO PHARMACEUTICAL CO., LTD.

Address: 3-24-1, TAKADA TOSHIMA-KU, TOKYO, 171-0033 Japan

Phone: +81-339851111

Website: visit here

Year Started: 1912 Incorporated: 1928

  • TAKEDA PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANY LIMITED

Address: 2-1-1, NIHOMBASHIHONCHO CHUO-KU, TOKYO, 103-0023 Japan

Phone: +81-332782111

Website: click here

Revenue: $30.40 billion

Year Started: 1925 Incorporated: 1925

  • TERUMO CORPORATION

Address: 2-44-1, HATAGAYA SHIBUYA-KU, TOKYO, 151-0072 Japan

Phone: +81-333748111

Website: visit here

Revenue: $5.83 billion

Year Started: 1921 Incorporated: 1921

  • TOWA PHARMACEUTICAL CO., LTD.

Address: 2-11, SHIMBASHICHO KADOMA, OSAKA, 571-0048 Japan

Phone: +81-669009100

Website: Click Here

Revenue: $1.47 billion

Year Started: 1951 Incorporated: 1957

  • TOYOBO CO., LTD.

Address: 2-2-8, DOJIMAHAMA, KITA-KU TOYOBO BLDG. OSAKA, OSAKA, 530-0004 Japan

Phone: +81-663483111

Website: visit

Revenue: $3.21 billion

Year Started: 1882 Incorporated: 1914

  • VIATRIS SEIYAKU K.K.

Address: 5-11-2, TORANOMON HOLLAND HILLS MORI TOWER MINATO-KU, TOKYO, 105-0001 Japan

Phone: +81-353097000

Year Started: 1953 Incorporated: 2010

Challenges Faced by the Pharmaceutical Companies in Japan

In recent years, the Japanese pharmaceutical industry has faced significant challenges due to increasing competition and a complex market.

Companies have found that developing successful drugs is becoming increasingly difficult. As a result, generics are rapidly gaining market share in ever shorter periods of time.

Increasing pricing pressures are also impacting large investments in R and D projects as the industry seeks rapid consolidation.

Meanwhile, access to physicians is hard to come by, and medical representatives (MRs) have gone to great lengths to improve productivity.

In addition to these external factors, internal conditions have also contributed to the decline in the industry’s competitiveness, such as the late adoption of digital tools and a lack of analytical skills to leverage data.

Regulations of Drug Use in Japan

The biggest change for the pharmaceutical industry in Japan was the revision of the country’s main pharmaceutical law in 2014, which was renamed the PMD Law, for pharmaceutical and medical devices.

Japanese officials proudly say that some drug approvals in Japan are now faster than in Europe and the US – a marked change from the days when Japan was seen as a difficult market for foreign companies.

The PMD law and other changes speeding up regulatory approvals for some drugs and devices have sparked a series of partnerships, licensing deals and research collaborations in Japan with companies already doing business there and companies rushing to get the riches and to tap the growth of Japan pharmaceutical market.

German company Boehringer Ingelheim has started a research collaboration with Kyoto University to develop drugs for hearing loss, and Eli Lilly has partnered with Japan’s National Cancer Center in gastric cancer research.

A joint venture between the USS.  Amgen and Astellas Pharma of Japan led to the approval of Amgen’s drug Repatha for the treatment of high cholesterol.

German company Bayer, which has a long history in Japan, also made headlines recently when it established its new open innovation center, Innovation Center Japan, in Osaka.

The center has even decided to open its own field office on the Kyoto University campus, which Bayer hopes will be a model for other academic associations and even other companies.

Frequently Asked Questions about the pharmaceutical companies in Japan

  • Are there pharmaceutical companies in Japan?

Japan’s pharmaceutical market is one of the largest in the world, worth around US$95 billion, according to figures from the country’s Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW). six of the top ten pharmaceutical companies in the country are operating in Japan.

  • What is the largest pharmaceutical company in Japan?

Takeda Pharmaceutical Co Ltd is the largest pharmaceutical company in Japan with a company growth of 13.61%.

  • Why is the pharmaceutical industry booming in Japan?

Older people need more medication. Many also recognize that Japan’s rapidly aging population presents a unique business opportunity.

Japan remains the second-largest pharmaceutical market in the world, behind only the United States and China.

  • Which are the most admired pharmaceutical companies in Japan?

Takeda has maintained its position as Japan’s most admired pharmaceutical company, followed by US giant Pfizer, the most admired foreign company, in second place.

Conclusion

Pharmaceutical companies today require highly specialized technologies and knowledge to produce a constant stream of innovative medicines, but it is difficult for one company to do it alone.

To highlight this concept, Bayer plans to open an incubation lab for life science startups in Kobe later this year to foster partnerships with local universities and research institutes.

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