Company Voices

  • Stanislav Vecera
    President and Representative Director

    “Kobe is superior in its living climate for employees, its convenient access, and its image as an international city. It is abundant with nature, being close to the sea and mountains, and also boasts a rich urban environment with a convenient transportation system, all of which provide an ideal working environment for our employees. Further, an international airport and bullet train station are easily accessible, so Kobe is convenient for both business and private life. These attractions of Kobe are useful for recruiting capable human resources.”

    The Procter & Gamble Company of Japan Limited

    The Japanese arm of the global manufacturer of daily necessities headquartered in the United States, this company first started its Japanese business in Osaka in 1973. After moving to Kobe Rokko Island in 1993, the company relocated its Japanese headquarters to the Sannomiya area in downtown Kobe in 2016.

  • Tatsuhiko Fukatani
    President and CEO

    “Nestlé has been headquartered in the same small Swiss town of Vevey since its founding. When we came to Japan, we used that experience to find a place which was not only easy to work in, but would also be easy for our employees to live in. This is why we established our headquarters in Kobe. Kobe has an international atmosphere, and is a fashionable city with many talented people. It is very comfortable for foreigners to live here. Kobe also has a character which actively adopts new things, and with a rich living environment, it is an ideal location for foreign corporations to establish themselves.”

    Nestlé Japan Ltd.

    The Japanese arm of the Nestlé Group, the world’s largest food manufacturer. Established in Yokohama in 1913, its base was moved to Kobe in 1922.

  • Simone Thomsen
    President and General Manager

    “Kobe has an environment that is easy for our employees to live and work in. Kobe’s concept as a medical industry city is advanced, which for a pharmaceutical company like us makes it a very ideal location from many perspectives. I am sure that the international setting in Kobe contributes to produce our talented people throughout the world. We would unite caring with discovery to make life better from this city, Kobe.”

    Eli Lilly Japan K.K.

    Eli Lilly Japan is the second largest corporate affiliate of Eli Lilly outside of the United States. The company first opened an office in Kobe in 1965 and was incorporated in 1975. Today, Eli Lilly develops pharmaceutical products that make life better for people all over the world.

  • Eriko Asai
    GE Japan – President and CEO
    GE Power Japan – Country Executive

    “We have operated out of Japan, including Kobe, for over 100 years, and in 1999 we moved our head office here from Tokyo. Kobe is a great location for doing business thanks for its excellent transit options. Furthermore, it is a city that is easy to work and live in, making it appealing for employees as well. Kobe developed as an international city, which is a big plus in terms of both business and lifestyle. ”

    GE Power Solutions Japan K.K.

    GE Power Solutions Japan is a member of the General Electric group that has 300,000 employees in 170 countries around the world, and seeks to become a global digital industry company in a wide range of fields, including manufacturing of power generation and transmission facilities, aircraft engines and medical devices. A true pioneer among foreign companies in Japan, it celebrated its 110th anniversary in 2017.

  • Heike Prinz
    President and Representative Director

    “Kobe is the land of partnership opportunities. Bayer Yakuhin has operated out of Japan including Kobe for more than 100 years. In 2018, we opened our incubation laboratory “CoLaborator Kobe” for start-ups and venture companies in Kobe Biomedical Innovation Cluster (KBIC). In the following year, we entered into a collaboration agreement with Kobe City and Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe (FBRI) on fostering and supporting venture companies. Through these collaborations, we will continue our effort to drive innovation from Kobe with the ultimate goal of improving the lives of people in Japan. ”

    Bayer Yakuhin, Ltd.

    The Japanese corporation of a global enterprise headquatered in Germany with core competencies in the life science fields. Headquartered in Osaka, the company aim to be one of leading pharmaceutical companies, which responds to Japanese patients' unmet medical needs through technological innovation and innovative products.

  • Guillaume Leprince
    Managing Director

    “Kobe city offers great talent and high-tech expertise in international environment. Kobe also has the excellent infrastructure and support system for new businesses and networking opportunities. Together with Kobe city, we continue to contribute to the sustainable growth of the Japanese aeronautic industry. Airbus Helicopters Japan is committed to ensuring Japan’s sky safer, more reliable and cost-efficient from Kobe airport.”

    Airbus Helicopters Japan Co., Ltd.

    Airbus Helicopters Japan is a subsidiary of Airbus Helicopters, the world’s leading helicopter manufacturer, with over 60 years of experience and the market share above 50% in the Japanese civil and parapublic market. We are the first and only foreign affiliated aviation company to provide total support, from aircraft sales to after sales support as well as training.

  • Thorsten Poehl
    Representative Director, President and Head of Human Resources

    “Boehringer Ingelheim is a research-driven pharmaceutical company based in Ingelheim, Germany. Kobe, with its concentration of healthcare-related facilities and state-of-the-art research institutions, is an ideal environment for our company’s research laboratory located on Port Island to be in contact with advanced medical technology and associated research activities. It also provides a good opportunity for interactions between researchers and for acquiring talented personnel. Kobe plays a role in our research and development organization which is expanding on a worldwide scale, and we will continue to contribute to the creation of innovative pharmaceutical products.”

    Nippon Boehringer Ingelheim Co., Ltd.

    Boehringer Ingelheim is a German company that established a pharmaceuticals research institute in Kobe in 2008. Among other activities, the company is involved in research, development and sales of prescription drugs.

  • Yasushi Fukagai
    President and CEO

    “Geislinger is a company headquartered in Salzburg, Austria. We first set up in Japan in 2002, but by then the business had already been developing for 50 years. Foreign companies have been setting up their headquarters in Kobe for over 100 years because it is such a great business environment, and I believe it to be the best place to do business. We moved our head office to Kobe in 2007, and we look forward to continuing to contribute to the development of Kobe in the future.”

    Geislinger K.K.

    Geislinger is the Japanese subsidiary of an Austrian company headquartered in Salzburg that manufactures couplings and dampers for marine engines. After first establishing an office in Tokyo in 2002, it moved its headquarters to Kobe in 2007.


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