Our team excels in transpacific entrepreneurship and venture for healthcare innovation.
Investors & Specialists
BT Slingsby M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H.
Founder & Managing Partner
The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis. Dante Alighieri
IkigaiFor me, how we personally and individually confront conflict, particularly those of ethics, defines who we are – a distinct line between reaction by fear and action by character.
Takeshi Takahashi M.B.A.
Takeshi Takahashi is a Managing Partner with Catalys Pacific. He holds extensive experience in M&As, IPOs, and financing in the healthcare sector. Prior to Catalys Pacific, he worked for the investment banking division of Morgan Stanley for 12 years and played a significant role in over 30 distinguished transactions including, but not limited to, Japanese companies’ acquisitions of U.S. listed companies with an enterprise value of over US$10.0 billion, acquisitions of global healthcare companies with an enterprise value of over US$5.0 billion, and a number of alternative financing transactions. Prior to working for Morgan Stanley, Takeshi was an analyst and a portfolio manager for global and Japan fixed income and managed a $3.0+ billion portfolio in Japan and the U.S. at Merrill Lynch’s asset management division.
Takeshi graduated from Waseda University with a degree in Political Science and Economics, and holds an M.B.A. from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Proficiently bilingual and bicultural.
Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up. Thomas A. Edison
IkigaiThe greatest failures lie in giving up while the greatest victories are attained only by insistent effort - a constant reminder to stand up and try one more time.
Reika is an Associate with Catalys Pacific. She brings experience in M&As, IPOs and financing in the healthcare, chemical and infrastructure sectors. Prior to Catalys Pacific, she worked for the Investment Banking Division of Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley where she was involved in the execution of Japanese listed companies’ acquisitions of companies in the US, the establishment of joint ventures among Japanese listed companies and in the proposal of multiple biotech companies in Japan for IPOs.
Reika graduated from Kyoto University with a degree in Multidisciplinary Medical Sciences, Human Health Sciences, Faculty of Medicine.
“The best preparation for good work tomorrow is to do good work today.” Elbert Hubbard
IkigaiAll of the efforts so far are never wasted. Nothing is more important than making continuous efforts and believing that today’s efforts will be good for tomorrow.
Jay currently serves as Venture Partner with Catalys Pacific. He brings 35 years’ experience in the pharmaceutical/biotech and drug delivery industries with his extensive corporate leadership and multiple product successes. In addition to working for Catalys Pacific, he currently serves as Chairman of The Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation and is on the board of directors of Esperion Therapeutics, Inovio Pharmaceuticals, and Craig Hospital, a world-renowned center for specialty rehabilitation and research for people with spinal cord injury and brain injury.
Prior to his current positions, he joined Versartis as President and CEO in May 2015. In 2018 when Versartis merged with Aravive, he became CEO of the newly formed company until January of 2020 when he retired. He was an Executive Partner at Sofinnova Ventures until May 2015. Previously, he served as President and CEO of NextWave Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Pfizer), Ilypsa (acquired by Amgen), and interim CEO of Relypsa (Ilypsa’s spin-out company, which was acquired by Galencia). He has participated in or led over 16 product launches by preparing markets and establishing sales and marketing operations, having served as Vice President of Commercial Operations at Telik and Alza Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Johnson & Johnson).
He holds a B.S. in business administration from the University of Arizona.
“It takes a village…” an African proverb
IkigaiA simple quote to emphasize that we all need like-minded individuals working together to reach our goals.
Ashwin Ram M.D.
Ashwin is a Vice President with Catalys Pacific, a physician-scientist and biotechnology entrepreneur. He is the founder and CEO of Jupiter Therapeutics, Inc. a preclinical biotech company focused on cell vesicles. Before launching Jupiter he worked as a radiation oncologist and for Genentech’s Early Clinical Development Oncology team.
Ashwin completed his MD at the University of Michigan Medical School with AOA honors and Dean’s distinction in research. After training in radiation oncology at Johns Hopkins Hospital–where he received the Rangos award for creativity in cancer discovery–he completed an MS in bioengineering at Caltech and a postdoc at Stanford University as an NIH/NCI Cancer Translational Nanotechnology fellow.
"He who lives in the present lives in eternity" Ludwig Wittgenstein
IkigaiI believe that when we are connected to the present moment we gain a sense of clarity that brings balance, joy, and success into our lives.
Hiromi is a Junior Associate with Catalys Pacific. He specializes in interdisciplinary translational research for clinical applications. He formerly was engaged in collaborative research with General Electric Global Research Center and in business development at Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation.
Hiromi graduated from Keio University and worked at the University of Tokyo as a research assistant and is a currently a Ph.D. candidate at the University of California Los Angeles in Bioengineering.
“First principle: never to let one's self be beaten down by persons or by events” Marie Curie
IkigaiScientific progress always faces its challenges, but true innovators overcome these. Behind each remarkable achievement is a group of innovators that overcame. Our credo is to contribute to the backbone of life sciences innovation, supporting outstanding scientists who shall not to be beaten down by the inevitable challenges along the way.
Ryan currently serves as Industry Advisor with Catalys Pacific and is Founder and Managing Director of Questa Capital, a healthcare-focused venture capital and growth equity investment firm. From 1996 through 2015, Ryan was a partner at New Enterprise Associates, where he served as a general partner, Head of Healthcare Investing and a member of the NEA Management Committee.
Prior to NEA, he worked in the corporate finance group at Alex. Brown & Sons and was a consultant at Arthur Andersen & Co. He represents Questa on the board of directors of Cortica, Dispatch Health, Eximis Surgical, Intrinsic Therapeutics, and Medrio. He has previously served on the boards of more than 30 private companies including Epix Therapeutics, Cartiva, NeoTract, Radiology Partners, DSI Renal, Ulthera, Acclarent, Proxima Therapeutics and FoxHollow.
Ryan also serves on the board of the Medical Device Manufacturers Association (MDMA) and the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) and is a four-time nominee to the Forbes Midas List of top venture capital investors. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Stanford University.
The first person you should be careful not to fool is yourself. Because you are the easiest person to fool! Richard Feynman
IkigaiFeynman's quote is a useful reminder that in VC investing it is easy to fall in love with a technology or become too personally invested in a company. As with Feynman in physics, self-delusion is significant risk in VC investing that requires constant vigilance
Jon is an Operating Partner with Catalys Pacific and CEO of Mineralys Therapeutics Inc., a Catalys Pacific portfolio company. Jon brings 35 years of pharmaceutical experience including roles as CEO of both private and public companies. He has worked in cardiovascular, GI and CNS companies with a focus on providing solutions for patients and their caregivers. He has launched several life changing therapies such as Copaxone and Azilect.
Prior to his current position, he was CEO of Impel NeuroPharma, a private biotech company focused on CNS disorders through novel upper nasal cavity delivery. Previously, he served as CEO at Nivalis Therapeutics which he took public in 2015 and was focused on treatments for cystic fibrosis. Jon held multiple roles of ascending responsibility at Teva Pharmaceuticals. He was part of the original team responsible for the launch of Copaxone for multiple sclerosis in the United States ultimately leading the U.S. neuroscience business and global CNS franchise.
Mr. Congleton attend Kansas State University, where he graduated with a B.S. in marketing and a minor in microbiology.
Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.
IkigaiThrough our work in biotech, we extend and improve people’s lives. There are few things more noble or needed now and in the future.
Tadataka Yamada M.D.
Tachi is an Industry Advisor with Catalys Pacific and a Venture Partner with Frazier Healthcare Partners. Prior to joining Frazier he was Executive Vice-President, Chief Medical & Scientific Officer and a Board Member of Takeda Pharmaceuticals. Tachi has served as President of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Global Health Program, Chairman, Research and Development and a Member of the Board of Directors of GlaxoSmithKline and Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine and Physician-in-Chief at the University of Michigan Medical Center.
Tachi holds a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and obtained his M.D. from New York University School of Medicine. In recognition of his contributions to medicine and science he has been elected to membership in the National Academy of Medicine (U.S.), the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Academy of Medical Sciences (U.K.) and the National Academy of Medicine (Mexico). He has received an honorary appointment as Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (K.B.E.) and been conferred the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Stars from the Government of Japan.
If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. African Proverb
IkigaiA constant reminder that one must always rely on good partners to address big challenges.
Jonathan MacQuitty Ph.D.
Jonathan currently serves as Industry Advisor with Catalys Pacific, Venture Partner with Lightspeed Venture Partners, and CEO of D2G Oncology, an oncology biotech start-up recently spun out of Stanford University.
Prior to his current positions, Jonathan served as CEO of Forty Seven, an immuno-oncology company that completed a $113 million IPO in 2018, from its inception until 2017. From 1999 to 2014, he was a Partner at Abingworth Management. Between 1988 until its acquisition 10 years later, he was founding CEO of GenPharm International. He began his career as a business development executive at Genencor and Genentech.
Other board directorships have included Acorda (now NASDAQ), Dicerna (now NASDAQ), Guava (acquired), Labcyte (acquired), Myelos (acquired), Orca, ParAllele BioScience (acquired), Personalis, Quantum Dot (acquired), SFJ Pharma, Sosei (listed in Tokyo), and Sunesis (listed on NASDAQ). He has also served on the Board of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO).
Jonathan holds an M.A. in Chemistry from Oxford University, a Ph.D. in Chemistry from University of Sussex, and an M.B.A. from Stanford University.
There’s no substitute for hard work. Thomas Edison
IkigaiThe assumption that insight alone is sufficient in any endeavor is wrong. The amount of work Einstein did after he had his insight about relativity vastly exceeded the work before.
Nobuo Hanai Ph.D.
Nobuo currently serves as Industry Advisor with Catalys Pacific. Prior to joining Catalys, he was Representative Director, President and Chief Executive Officer at Kyowa Kirin Co., Ltd. (previously known as Kyowa Hakko Kirin Co., Ltd.) from 2012 to 2018. Thereafter, he served as Representative Director, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer in 2018 and as Director and Chairman in 2019.
As CEO of Kyowa Kirin, he led the development and launch of numerous innovative drugs including mogamulizumab (Potelligent™) and benralizumab (Fasenra™). Nobuo also successfully realized multiple partnerships with Japanese and global pharmaceutical companies along with several M&A transactions of biotech companies outside Japan.
After joining Kyowa Hakko Kogyo in 1976, he led R&D activities of its antibodies. In 2003, he founded BioWa, Inc. in the US in order to license technology related to antibodies, where he served as President and Chief Executive Officer and managed the company. After the inauguration of Kyowa Hakko Kirin, he led the development of various innovative compounds as a global head of R&D.
He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Tokyo and a doctorate degree from Yamaguchi University.
Let the withering wither and, in its place, let the blossoming bloom. Dr. Benzaburo Kato, Founder of Kyowa Hakko Kogyo
IkigaiDr. Benzaburo Kato led Kyowa Hakko with this style of leadership during the 1960s. One must fully dispose of past practices in order to leave room for the creation and growth of new opportunities.
Norihiko is an Industry Advisor with Catalys Pacific and brings with him global investment expertise in multiple sectors including, but not limited to, venture companies and cross-border M&As. Norihiko currently serves as CEO and President of VLC Holdings Co., Ltd. and also manages Sun Investment LLC, an investment and advisory firm for international businesses and deals initiated by Japanese companies. He is a founder and shareholder of Forbes in Japan. Norihiko is also co-founder of Miyako Capital, a venture capital firm affiliated with Kyoto University.
Previously, Norihiko worked at Goldman Sachs Investment Banking Division Financial Institutions Group where he engaged in M&A advisory, financing, and principal investments, as well as in global fixed income and currency team in Goldman Sachs Asset Management. He graduated from Keio University with a B.A. in law.
Travel, like dreams, is a door that opens from the real world into a world that is yet to be discovered. Guy de Maupassant