Around the World in 120 Days: Asia 101 - Survey of the Life Sciences

Tuesday, May 13 2014
8:00 am – 10:00 am

Location: MassBio, 300 Technology Square, 8th Floor, Cambridge, MA

Asia is home to the majority of the world’s population and provides diverse marketplaces for products and varied destinations for outsourcing.  This panel will provide a sweeping survey of the life sciences in Asia, from Yokohama to Bangalore.

Come learn:

  • Essentials on the current and future marketplace of Asia
  • Market entry basics in Japan, Korea, China, and India – Opportunities and Obstacles
  • Considerations on outsourcing
  • The cultural divide – how to find a bridge

A panel of experts will discuss topics ranging from IP protection to market entry to issues in outsourcing in leading Asian markets and clusters.

Attendees will leave with a better understanding for distinctions of the leading markets and clusters in Asia as they relate to the life sciences industry.


  • Joe Damond,  Senior Vice President, International Affairs, Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO)
  • Linda Ji, Partner, Global Business & Transactions and China & Asia Pacific Practice Groups, Nixon Peabody LLP
  • Brian Pereira, MD, President and Chief Executive Officer, Visterra Inc.
  • Pushpa Vijayaraghavan, Vice President – Life Sciences Advisory, Sathguru Inc.


  • Karl Ruping, Founder & Managing Partner, IncTANK Ventures


 This Forum is presented by the Entrepreneur's University and Legal & Regulatory Working Groups



Joe Damond, Senior Vice President, International Affairs, Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO)

Mr. Damond is responsible for developing and implementing the industry association’s program of international advocacy and outreach, including the areas of trade policy and foreign government relations.

Prior to taking his position at BIO, Mr. Damond was Vice President for International Government Relations in Pfizer’s Washington Office from 2006-2011. In that capacity he was responsible for managing and coordinating Pfizer’s international trade issues with the Administration and Congress.   

Prior to his appointment at Pfizer in 2006, Mr. Damond was with the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) for five years.  As PhRMA’s Deputy Vice President for International Affairs, he was responsible for managing PhRMA’s programs with respect to market access barriers that affect the research-based pharmaceutical industry, as well as managing PhRMA’s Asia and Japan programs.

Before coming to PhRMA, Mr. Damond spent 12 years as a trade negotiator at the Office of the United States Trade Representative, where his last assignment, from 1999-2001, was as Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Asia and Pacific/APEC Affairs.  During this time, he was also chief negotiator of the historic U.S.-Vietnam Bilateral Trade agreement, completed in July 2000.  Prior to his time at USTR, Mr. Damond also spent four years at the U.S. Commerce Department, working on bilateral and multilateral trade negotiations.

Mr. Damond received his Master’s degree from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs in 1985, and his undergraduate degree magna cum laude from  Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service, in 1983.  

Linda Ji, Partner, Global Business & Transactions and China & Asia Pacific Practice Groups, Nixon Peabody LLC

Linda Ji is a partner of Nixon Peabody LLP, an international law firm with 16 offices worldwide, including Boston, Hong Kong and Shanghai.  Linda has extensive experience in both domestic and cross-border business transactions, with a specialty in inbound and outbound transactions involving the U.S. and China.  Linda counsels U.S. companies doing business and investments in China and counsels Chinese companies setting up and expanding their operations in the U.S.  

Linda advises the clients in a variety of industries (including high-tech and life sciences) and develop for them tailored strategies and practical solutions under both Chinese and U.S. laws to help the clients achieve success in both markets, including corporate and deal structuring in a tax-efficient manner, brand and IP rights protection strategy, employment arrangements, profits and dividends repatriation mechanism and exit strategy, strategic alliances, manufacturing, distribution and licensing arrangements, mergers and acquisitions, private equity and venture capital financings, securities offerings and U.S. securities law compliance.

Brian Pereira, MD, President and Chief Executive Officer, Visterra, Inc.

Brian Pereira is a veteran biopharmaceutical and healthcare leader with experience in financing and growing companies. Prior to joining Visterra, Dr. Pereira served as the President and CEO of AMAG Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAG.) At AMAG, Dr. Pereira raised four financing rounds at increasing valuations, and built the clinical development, manufacturing, supply-chain, and commercial infrastructure for the company's iron therapy product for anemia. Earlier, he served as the President and CEO of a Tufts Medical Center Physician Organization, and his prior roles at Tufts Medical Center included interim COO, Vice-Chairman for Strategic Development of the Department of Medicine, and staff physician. Dr. Pereira serves on the Board of Directors of Biodel, Inc. (NASDAQ: BIOD) and NephroPlus Ltd. Previously, he was the Chairman of the Board of the Harvard-MIT Biomedical Enterprise Program and President and Board member of the National Kidney Foundation. He is an Adjunct Professor of Medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine and has contributed over 200 published scientific articles. He received his medical degree (MBBS) from St. John's Medical College, MD (Medicine) and DM (Nephrology) from the Post Graduate Institute, and MBA from Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.

Karl Ruping, Founder & Managing Partner, IncTank Ventures

Karl Ruping is Founder and Managing Partner of incTANK Ventures, an early-stage venture fund with offices in Cambridge, MA and Tokyo, Japan.  He is also an Associate at Harvard’s Asia Center, where he focuses on innovation and intellectual property rights in the Asia/Pacific region. Karl’s particular area of interest is patent protection of advances in computational biology, high-performance computing, and computational finance.

Karl has a B.A. in economics from Colby College, completed a J.D. from Boston University, and is a patent attorney registered with USPTO. He read international law at the Institut für die Wissenschaften vom Menschen and the University of Vienna (Austria), held a post-doctoral position at the University of Tokyo, and was a Research Fellow at MIT’s School of Engineering. Karl has published numerous articles and book chapters on innovation and intellectual property rights, including Risk Management in Incubators in Management of Technology: Growth Through Business Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Management of Intellectual Property Rights: Challenges and Best Practices for New Technology Companies in IAMOT Proceedings (2004) and Intellectual Property Protection in University Startups in Annual Meetings of AIChE (2005).

Pushpa Vijayaraghavan, Vice President, Life Sciences Advisory, Sathguru Inc.

Pushpa leads the life sciences practice of Sathguru, a niche emerging markets focused strategy and innovation advisory firm.  Founded in 1985 in India, Sathguru’s expertise includes South Asia focused corporate strategy, M&A and innovation advisory encompassing international innovation access, advancement and commercialization.  Sathguru has a team of around 150 professionals across service offerings and has offices in India and USA.

Pushpa advises enterprises, research institutions and venture capitalists on advancing innovation and leveraging opportunities in India and other South Asian countries. Pushpa focuses on strategic planning of corporate global footprint expansion, research and product strategy for emerging markets, strategic partnership opportunities, policy and M&A advisory.  Pushpa’s prior experience of about twelve years includes leading consulting engagements at PwC and Ernst &Young and a short stint in the University of Michigan Technology Transfer Office.  She has a bachelor’s degree from Osmania University (India) and an MBA from the Ross School of Business at University of Michigan.  Pushpa is an often called upon speaker on Indian and emerging market opportunity in life sciences, serves as an alumni advisor to the India Business Conference at the University of Michigan and has led policy advisory engagements for the World Bank and the Government of India among others.  

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