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  • UTEC is proud to share with you that our Managing Partner Tomotaka Goji was invited to speak and discuss by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) at its World Investment Forum in Geneva, Switzerland on Oct 23rd 2018.

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UTEC is proud to share with you that our Managing Partner Tomotaka Goji was invited to speak and discuss by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) at its World Investment Forum in Geneva, Switzerland on Oct 23rd 2018.

 


Goji on the UNCTAD AMR Funding mechanisms and investors panel with Egerton- Warburton of UK Global AMR Innovation Fund, Lawson of Carb-X and Piddock of GARDP


UTEC is proud to share with you that our Managing Partner Tomotaka (“Tommy”) Goji was invited to speak and discuss by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) at its World Investment Forum in Geneva, Switzerland on Oct 23rd 2018.


Owing to UTEC’s recent lead investor role in Bugworks Research, Inc., a leading antibiotic startup based out of India, Goji was asked to speak at a panel titled ‘Fostering Investment in the Development of New Antibacterial Treatments’. In fact, UTEC’s investment in Bugworks was the first ever life sciences startup investment from a Japanese investor into an Indian startup.


Goji addressed a gathering of 120+ global delegates about UTEC’s investment and role in Bugworks, Japan’s historical role in pioneering antibiotics innovation and the ongoing collaboration of Bugworks with Japanese academia. Goji stressed that Japan gave birth to more than 40 antibiotics that have been licensed globally, such as Colistin, the first ever antibiotic in the world against gram-negative bacteria which are the most dangerous bacteria, and touched upon a threat by recent discovered Colistin-resistant gram-negative bacteria, elaborating UTEC’s contribution for Bugworks to bridge the company and Japanese scientists in this field, such as Professor Satoshi Murakami at Tokyo Institute of Technology who figured out the mechanism of drug-resistant bacteria to pump out the antibiotics from their cell walls, to help the company develop the enabling antibiotics that combat multi-drug resistant gram-negative bacteria. On another front, he also shared his proactive views on developments of the novel AMR (antimicrobial resistance) drug industry as an emerging investing opportunity, touching upon several promising examples by startups achieving corporate alliances with big pharmaceutical companies, financial exits like Initial Public Offerings, and successful fundraising from global venture capital firms.


Regarding recommendations on policies to expedite private investment to address AMR, Goji elaborated his views on both “push incentives” and “pull incentives,” advising that the United Nations take an initiative to let as many countries as possible to participate in the global joint programs such as grants into innovative research and development, and that the global community promote “shared-responsibility approach” that encourage hospitals with acute need to address AMR to share responsibility to introduce novel AMR drugs and measures.


With UTEC being one of the few private global investors in AMR sector, Goji’s views on the improving AMR drug market and his policy recommendations to tackle the AMR crisis were well-received by the audience.


It is a further matter of pride for UTEC that Bugworks was selected as the only startup to speak at this distinguished event. Dr. Anand Anandkumar, CEO of Bugworks, made a passionate case for the public and private sector healthcare stakeholders to come together to fund novel antibiotics as well as streamline the clinical trial and market entry process to ensure that the drugs see the light of the day.


A highlight of the event that evoked applause from the audience involved a comment from co-panelist Mr. Christopher Egerton-Warburton – or “Edge” of UK Global AMR Innovation Fund who remarked - “There are not enough Edge Capitals (referring to UTEC) in the world to pull these companies through to the end”.


UTEC will continue to contribute to create a global eco-system in which we sustainably grow investments in R&D and foster the discovery and development of innovative antibiotics and diagnostics to address AMR on a global scale.



Anandkumar of Bugworks on the UNCTAD AMR Researchers and Industry panel with Yamano of Shionogi, Gitzinger of Bioversys, Paccaud of WHO and Piddock of GARDP