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Astellas Pharma EMEA Announces New Senior Appointments

CHERTSEY, England, August 7, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --

Astellas Pharma EMEA, the regional headquarters of Astellas Pharma Inc. for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, has appointed Simon Dew to the position of Chief Strategy Officer from his previous role as Vice President: Business and Commercial Development. Simon succeeds Naoki Okamura, who after over two years in the post has moved to the Company's global headquarters in Tokyo as Corporate Vice President, Licensing & Alliances. Simon's senior team will be joined by Jun Kono, who has been appointed Vice President: Corporate Strategy and Communications.

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Astellas is the second largest pharmaceutical company in Japan and among the top 20 globally. It is growing strongly in the EMEA region, with an 8.1% rise in sales to €1,967 million in FY2013. The Company's rigorous prioritisation of research and development (R&D) to produce innovative medicines that provide new standards of care for patients and their doctors, has seen a range of therapies recently launched in the region, including new classes of treatment for advanced prostate cancer, overactive bladder and the hospital-acquired infection, Clostridium difficile.

Ken Jones, President and CEO Astellas Pharma EMEA, commented: "These are important appointments to our strong senior leadership team as we review our strategic direction to support the Company's continued success.  Simon has made a significant contribution to Astellas since joining eight years ago - helping ensure the Company is on track to reach goals set in our business blueprint, VISION 2015, in terms of our therapeutic focus, pipeline and sales. He has supported the region's excellent financial performance, which has seen three consecutive years of growth despite a challenging industry environment and continued austerity.  Jun brings a wealth of experience in corporate strategy and planning, and we are delighted that he is returning to the EMEA from our Head Office in Japan." 

As Chief Strategy Officer, Simon will play a major role in the EMEA region by helping steer Astellas as it continues to evolve its portfolio of therapies in priority disease areas. In particular, Astellas aims to further enhance its leadership in Urology and Transplantation, whilst developing a new cancer drugs portfolio to meet the Company's objective of achieving global category leadership in Oncology. Nearly a fifth of global sales are invested in R&D in a multi-track approach that combines in-house drug discovery, in-licensing and collaborations with a wide range of research organisations.

In his new role Simon will oversee Business Development, Alliance Management, Commercial Development, and Corporate Strategy and Communications, leading a team of around 18 specialists across these functions. With 25 years in the industry and a wealth of experience in commercial development strategies and managing alliances/acquisitions, Simon's expertise will help Astellas maintain the innovative and productive pipeline that has become its hallmark.

Jun takes on leadership of Astellas Pharma EMEA's Corporate Strategy and Communications and will be responsible for guiding the strategic direction of the Company's mid-term plan, product portfolio and commercial operations. He will also lead development of Astellas' growing profile in the EMEA region, building the Company's corporate brand through communications targeting a wide range of internal and external stakeholders. In addition, Jun will be responsible for planning and directing Astellas Pharma EMEA's programme of corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives.

Notes to Editors 

About Simon Dew 

Simon joined Astellas in 2006, shortly after the Company was established, as Senior Manager Business Development. As well as establishing specialist EMEA commercial and business development capabilities and building the Company's profile as a partner of choice, Simon has provided strategic direction and managed external alliances to ensure the pipeline supports priority franchise areas and delivers new products that meet approval and reimbursement requirements across European markets. Under his leadership, his team played a significant role in the commercialisation of XTANDI (enzalutamide), a new treatment for advanced prostate cancer, developed in partnership with Medivation, which is a pivotal part of Astellas' growing oncology portfolio.

Simon originally qualified as a pharmacist and has broad experience in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry through previous roles at Quintiles Transnational, PAREXEL International, Phytopharm, SmithKline Beecham and Bristol Myers Squibb.

About Jun Kono 

Jun was appointed to a strategic planning role at Yamanouchi in 2003, where he was a key member of the merger-integration project to form Astellas in 2005. Since then he has expanded his expertise in corporate strategy and business development, through his engagement in projects for corporate vision, company acquisition and in/out licensing of various assets. His most recent role as Vice President: Head of Executive Office at the Company's Tokyo headquarters focused on corporate senior global management, including work with senior leaders to enhance operational performance thorough cross-functional collaboration.  Jun has worked both in Japan and the UK, and between 2006 and 2010 was Associate Director, Strategic Planning for the EMEA region.

Jun received a Master of Business Administration (Hons.) from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. 

About Astellas Pharma EMEA  

Astellas Pharma EMEA operates in 40 countries across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and is the regional business of Tokyo-based Astellas Pharma Inc. Astellas is a pharmaceutical company dedicated to improving the health of people around the world through the provision of innovative and reliable pharmaceuticals. The organisation's focus is to deliver outstanding R&D and marketing to continue growing in the world pharmaceutical market. Astellas presence in Europe also includes an R&D site and three manufacturing plants. The company employs approximately 4,350 staff across these regions. For more information about Astellas Pharma EMEA, please visit

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