ITOCHU Announces the Integration of ACRONET, a Domestic Clinical Development Support Company, and A2 Healthcare Corporation

October 1, 2014

ITOCHU Corporation (headquartered in Minato-ku, Tokyo; Masahiro Okafuji, President & CEO; hereinafter “ITOCHU”) announced today that ACRONET Corporation (headquartered in Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo; Koichi Kato, President & CEO; hereinafter “ACRONET”), a 100% subsidiary of ITOCHU offering clinical development support and post-marketing surveillance operations to pharmaceutical companies and medical device manufacturers, and A2 Healthcare Corporation (headquartered in Toshima-ku, Tokyo; Hiroshi Ichikawa, President & CEO; hereinafter “A2”) will merge as of November 1, 2014.

ITOCHU has been developing healthcare-related businesses in response to the growing needs in various areas of pharmaceutical/medical care both in Japan, which faces a declining birth rate and an aging population, and in other Asian countries where the economy is growing rapidly. In terms of the drug development support business (hereinafter, the “CRO” business*1), recognizing the flow of the allocation of management resources to the development of new drugs by pharmaceutical companies as well as the increase in outsourcing needs, ITOCHU acquired ACRONET in 2005, thereby making serious inroads into the CRO business. Subsequently in June 2014, ITOCHU acquired the clinical development support business ASKLEP Inc. and established A2 for the purpose of expanding its CRO business to enable the building of strategic partnerships with client companies as customer needs diversify (assistance in the management of diseases with no effective drugs or treatment, increasing international collaborative programs for clinical trials, and so on).
This integration will allow ITOCHU to fulfill a broad range of needs, including international collaborative programs for clinical trials and large scale projects, by utilizing the enhanced size of its CRO business with a total of 860 employees and 500 people engaged in monitoring operations.

ITOCHU regards the CRO business as a priority business in the healthcare segment and plans to develop and strengthen the business with the aim of achieving sales of 10 billion yen as soon as possible and solidifying its position as a leading company in the industry. It will also strive to contribute to the improvement of patients’ QOL (Quality Of Life) by promoting the creation of new drugs through its clinical development support operations.

  1. CRO: Contract Research Organization; an outsourcing business in which various operations (monitoring, data management, statistical analysis operations, etc.) required in the development phases of pharmaceuticals are conducted on behalf of clients.

Newly integrated company

Corporate name A2 Healthcare Corporation
Location of head office

Sumitomo Fudosan Korakuen Building, 1-4-1, Koishikawa,

Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo

Name and title of

representative directors and board members

(positions to be assumed)

Tadashi Katori, President & CEO

Hiroshi Ichikawa, Executive Vice President

Satoki Nakajima, Director

Hajime Hishinuma, Director

Shoji Yamada, Director

Hitoshi Kamiya, Director

Koichi Kato, Part-time Director

Hironari Ogata, Part-time Corporate Auditor
Main business CRO business
Capital 100 million yen
Fiscal year end March 31
Major shareholder ITOCHU Corporation (100%)
Number of employees Approx. 860