History of Chugai Pharmaceutical

Understanding Chugai’s history that fostered the business philosophy “Innovation all for the patients”

Innovation all for the patients

Chugai and Nippon Roche were established in 1925 and 1932 respectively, in Japan. Since then, both companies have modernized their business management by building research laboratories and plants. and have contributed to healthcare in Japan and abroad through a variety of products.

Chugai’s founding spirit of “Creating drugs that benefit the world” remains deeply firmly rooted as our integral business philosophy “Innovation all for the patients” in our culture today.

We will look back on the history of Chugai, which has overcome many difficulties by innovating its business structure and focus since its founding.

  1. Foundation - 1930s

    1. Founded because of medicine shortages after a large earthquake

    The founder, Juzo Ueno, established Chugai Pharmaceutical Trading Company, the predecessor of Chugai Pharmaceutical, in 1925 in order to solve the serious shortage of medicines after the Great Kanto Earthquake. The spirit of “creating medicines useful to the world,” which he espoused at that time, has been carried on to this day.

  2. 1940 - 1950s

    2. Fresh start from the period of post-war turmoil

    In the decade following the end of World War II, Chugai worked to recover from the difficult social environment. Business grew rapidly with the success of Guronsan®, a detoxification promotion and liver function recovery agent, and its tablet formulation for the non-prescription drug market, as well as the insecticide Varsan® Tablets.

  3. 1960 - 1970s

    3. From non-prescription to prescription pharmaceuticals

    Chugai’s performance suffered as a result of rapid changes in the market environment for non-prescription pharmaceuticals. However, in response to the changing demands for more advanced treatments, the company shifted its business to prescription pharmaceuticals and rebuilt itself.

  4. 1980 - 1990s

    4. The challenge of biotech became today’s cornerstone

    Judging that the establishment of biotechnologies would be essential in the future, Chugai made a policy shift from chemical compounds to bio-drug discovery, which is based on genetic engineering and microorganisms. This became the foundation for Chugai’s strength today.

  5. 2000s -

    5. Alliance with Roche

    In 2002, Chugai entered into a strategic alliance with Roche, one of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies. Chugai established a stable revenue base because Roche’s innovative products can now be sold in Japan exclusively by Chugai, while Chugai promotes its own in-house developed products in global markets through Roche. In the global market, Roche can sell the products created from Chugai’s highly innovative research, thereby establishing a win-win relationship with Roche.

  6. 2000s -

    6. Antibody Drug Discovery - Continuous Innovative Drug Discovery

    We focus on creating new drugs to address the medical needs of diseases for which there are still no effective treatments. Since the launch of Actemra® in 2005, the first antibody drug to be developed in Japan, we have continued to invest management resources in research and development, creating a number of innovative drugs.

  7. 2000s -

    7. Promotion of Personalized Healthcare

    Chugai is committed to promoting personalized medicine that provides treatments tailored to each patient based on genetic information and other data. In addition to research and development, Chugai also supports the provision of information to medical professionals.

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History of Chugai Pharmaceutical

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