About Us

President Message

SBI Pharmaceuticals was established in 2008 with the aim of developing and commercializing 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA), a fascinating amino acid with multiple action mechanisms.

5-ALA can be viewed as a precursor of haemoglobin, which carries oxygen throughout the body. In plants, it is metabolized into chlorophyll as an essential component of photosynthesis, and is located in the chloroplast.

In animals and humans, the equivalent to the chloroplast is the mitochondrium, the powerhouse of the cell. Here 5-ALA contributes to energy production while being metabolized into cytochrome C.

As such, 5-ALA can realistically be considered as a substance that can contribute not only to the promotion of plant and animal growth but also to human metabolism. The potential of 5-ALA can easily be extrapolated to contribute to the treatment of human diseases and the support of health maintenance.

There are two ways of producing 5-ALA: fermentation and chemical synthesis. SBI Pharmaceuticals has access to both pathways in order to facilitate the best pathway depending on the field of use.

Through our sister company SBI ALApromo, commercializing of foods containing 5-ALA with functional claims, such as “Toh-down” to control blood glucose levels and cosmetics based in 5-ALA is already under way.

In the medical field we have successfully introduced a 5-ALA-based technology where cancer cells become pink fluorescent under blue light, enabling surgeons to better detect respective tumours. SBI Pharmaceuticals has targeted bladder cancer while our sister company in Europe, photonamic, and its U.S. subsidiary targets brain tumours.

As a group member of SBI ALApharma in Hong Kong, we look forward to further developments for 5-ALA in fields such as glucose metabolism, mitochondrial disease, and sarcopenia derived from muscle weakness in the aging population.

SBI Pharmaceuticals, together with its group member companies in Europe, photonamic, U.S., NXDC, and Canada, SBI ALApharma Canada, will continue to follow our mission to improve human health and contribute to the global social environment.

SBI Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd.
Representative Director and President
Yoshitaka Kitao


Our Structure

Mechanical Translations by Google »
1. 北尾
Representative Director, President
Serves as representative director, president & CEO of SBI Holdings; representative director, chairman of SBI Investment; and director & CEO of SBI ALApharma.
Yoshitaka Kitao

An experienced investor, especially in biotechnology and financial business.
Prior to the establishment of SBI Group, served as MANAGING DIRECTOR, CFO of Softbank. Prior to Softbank, held several important roles in Nomura Securities.
Obtained a bachelor’s degree from Keio University.

2. コシエッサ
Representative Director
Senior Executive Vice President
Ulrich Kosciessa

Serves as representative director of Photonamic and director & COO of SBI ALApharma. Prior to joining the SBI ALApharma Group, served as managing director of Medac. Achieved a ten-fold sales increase during his tenure. Completed a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology at Georg-August University of Goettingen

3. 平井
Executive Officer CFO
Kenji Hirai

Serves as director & CFO of SBI ALApharma.
Prior to joining SBI Pharmaceuticals, served as director and CFO of SBI Holdings. Began his career at Suntory Beverage and Food Ltd.
Received a MBA from Northwestern University, U.S.A.

4. 竹岡
Executive Officer COO
Masahiro Takeoka

Prior to joining SBI Pharmaceuticals, representative of the Japan office of Hospira and Cell Therapies Pty., Ltd. Began his career at Banyu Pharmaceutical. Experienced in MR, marketing, corporate planning and business development. Obtained a bachelor’s degree from Kansai University.

5. 中島
Director, Executive Officer
Serves as CSO of SBI ALApharma.
Motowo Nakajima

Prior to joining SBI Pharmaceuticals, held several prominent positions in Novartis and Johnson & Johnson. Served as adviser to the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), as a member of the Research Evaluation Committee of the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO), involved science and technology policy-making in Japan, and an expert member of the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Medical Science.
Completed a Ph.D in Pharmaceutical Science from the University of Tokyo.

6. 石塚
Executive Officer
Masahiro Ishizuka

Prior to joining SBI Pharmaceuticals, served as a researcher affiliated with ALA of Cosmo Oil Co., Ltd. At the time of the business transfer of ALA from Cosmo Oil to SBI ALApharma Group, joined SBI Pharmaceuticals. Has deep insight regarding ALA.
Completed a Ph.D. in Biology at Tokyo University of Agriculture.