INC expands in Japan as local market soars

As more and more eyes turn toward Japan for clinical trials, INC Research is setting up two outposts in the country, building off years of local partnerships and going it alone in the growing market.

INC is launching its Japanese subsidiary with facilities in Osaka and the Shinagawa ward in Tokyo, giving its existing global clients access to trials in the country and putting the company in position to tap the growing drug development industry there.

The plan, in part, is to port INC's trusted clinical processes into Japan, bridging the CRO's standards with how clinical research has long been done in the country, Asia Vice President Garth Tierney said. The CRO will employ qualified regulatory and therapeutic staff at its two offices, providing the same reliable service that helped INC make its name around the world, Tierney said.

"There is a growing enthusiasm from both pharma and government sectors for Japan to be involved in both global and regional clinical trials," Tierney said in a statement. "In response, INC Research is implementing a very considered approach to the market that will create greater confidence among our customers in conducting trials in Japan, as well as ultimately provide more direct influence on how trials are conducted."

While INC sets up shop on a Japanese subsidiary, other CROs have looked to partnerships and joint ventures to cash in on the local demand. In April, InVentiv Health ($VTIV) signed a deal with Japanese CRO Bell Medical Solutions to team up on lab services, and, in March, the soon-to-be-acquired ReSearch Pharmaceutical Services kicked off a joint venture with local outfit Asklep offer clinical research work.

- read INC's announcement