It’s no secret that many of the nation’s biggest businesses call Chicago home, but did you know that many of the major players in the pharmaceutical industry are headquartered in Northbrook? In fact, 2 of the industry’s leaders – Astellas and CVS Health – are spurring industry innovations on the Northside of Chicago, within an easy commute of our apartments in Northbrook. Here’s the rundown on these major pharmaceutical players and how they not only make an impact within their industry but also in the communities they serve.
Astellas – Changing Tomorrow
Astellas is an international pharmaceutical manufacturer whose roots date back to Japan in the 1800s but today is headquartered practically in the parking lot of our apartments in Northbrook, IL. The story of Astellas is really the story of two companies, Fujisawa Pharmaceuticals and Yamanouchi Pharmaceuticals, who both got their start in Osaka, Japan. Tomokichi Fujisawa opened Fujisawa Shoten, which translates to Fujisawa Bookstore, in 1894 and shortly after branched out into the pharmaceutical space with the creation of a homemade insect repellant that became very popular, eventually changing the name of the company to Fujisawa Pharmaceuticals. Kenji Yamanouchi threw his hat in the pharmaceutical ring in 1923 when he opened Yamanouchi Yakuhin Shokai. The two companies would grow parallel to each other each expanding their operations into Europe and the US in the 1960s and 1970s, before merging to create Astellas Pharma Inc. in 2005. The newly created company would move its US headquarters to Northbrook, IL in 2012, walking distance from our Northbrook apartments.
What they do
Today, Astellas is committed to pushing the boundaries of science in order to develop innovative medications and medical solutions to address the unmet needs of patients all over the globe. “Patients are at the center of everything we do,” says President of Astellas US, Percival Barretto-Ko. Their primary focus is in the fields of oncology, urology, nephrology, immunology, cardiology, infectious diseases, and central nervous system conditions, but they also aim to expand into muscular diseases, ophthalmology, and next-gen vaccines, committing over 16% of their global revenue (almost $2 billion) to R&D. Their “Science-first” approach to R&D is key to their success, dedicating over 3,300 employees to R&D efforts in 2018, with plans on expanding innovation efforts in the coming years. In 2018, Astellas grossed over $3.8 billion in sales in the US alone, and currently has 31 medical compounds in Phase II of development or beyond. Some of their most impactful medications include XTANDI (prostate cancer), XOSPATA (leukemia), and Lexiscan (cardiology).
Astellas’ commitment to their patients goes beyond creating innovative medications. Astellas is also committed to giving back through the Astellas USA Foundation and their Living SMART® initiative. Focusing on 3 pillars, Health & Well Being, Science WoRx®, and Disaster Relief, the Living SMART® framework aims to “build a brighter future for our patients, our community, and our partners” by increasing access to healthcare, improving STEM education, and providing quick-response disaster relief. Astellas also encourages employees to donate their time, providing each employee with five paid volunteer days. Since 2005, Astellas employees in the US have volunteered over 110,000 hours.
If you aspire to join the Astellas team, check out their open positions and submit an application today.
CVS Health – Helping people on their path to better health
CVS (Consumer Value Store) was founded in 1963 in Lowell, Massachusetts by two brothers, Stanley and Sidney Goldstein, and their partner Ralph Hoagland. The three men cut their teeth in the health and beauty industry helping retailers manage their product lines before making the jump to starting their own store. Their focus was simple, provide customers with health and beauty products with an emphasis on great customer service. The store quickly grew in popularity with the company operating 17 stores in Massachusetts by 1964. Looking to expand their offering, CVS began adding pharmacy departments to their stores in 1967, creating the blueprint of the CVS stores we have today. Throughout the next four decades, CVS would continue to expand their national footprint by acquiring struggling drugstore chains and developing retail innovations such as the first pharmacy loyalty card, the first integrated online pharmacy, and incorporating retail medical clinics in their stores. Today, CVS Health is headquartered in Northbrook, IL, less than a 5-minute drive from our Northbrook apartments.
What they do
CVS Health’s impact on the pharmaceutical industry isn’t in the manufacturer space, but rather the retail space. Be that as it may, this does not mean the company has any less impact on the industry. In fact, some would argue that CVS has made a massive impact on the industry by making pharmaceutical products more accessible with over 4.5 million people being served at CVS pharmacies every day. However, today, CVS’s influence goes beyond the pharmaceutical industry as the company claims to live up to their purpose – “helping people on their path to better health” – by providing healthcare services and plans that aim to make quality care more accessible and affordable. Today CVS is the nation’s leading operator of retail medical clinics with over 1,100 Minute Clinics in CVS stores across the country. CVS has also partnered with Omnicare and Coram to provide long-term pharmacy services and specialty infusion services to their customers. In 2018, CVS made its biggest acquisition to date by acquiring health insurance provider Aetna. While the specific impacts of the merger have yet to be ironed out, CVS has made it clear that the merger will “transform the consumer health experience” and make CVS the nation’s premier health innovation company.
CVS Health is also committed to supporting the communities they serve through the CVS Health Foundation. The CVS Health Foundation provides strategic investment to nonprofit partners that address issues ranging from access to healthcare to disaster relief, opioid abuse, and tobacco use. Since 2006, The foundation has provided over $127 million worth of free health services in disadvantaged communities and has aided in multiple disaster relief efforts by ensuring people in affected areas are still able to receive vital medications. CVS has also been instrumental in the fight against tobacco, becoming the first retail pharmacy in the country to stop selling tobacco products in 2014. In 2016, CVS announced their Be the First initiative, a plan to invest $50 million over the next 5 years in order to deliver the first tobacco-free generation. To do this, CVS partnered with the nation’s leading anti-tobacco groups and youth organizations to raise awareness and educate the public about the health dangers that come with tobacco use. CVS has also partnered with the American Cancer Society and the Truth Initiative to expand the number of universities and colleges with 100% smoke and tobacco-free campuses. CVS is currently in year four of the initiative and has seen positive results, reaching over 13 million youths through their tobacco education programs.
Want to join the CVS Health team? Check out their current openings and submit an application today.
Two impactful companies just steps from our Northbrook apartments
The Chicago area is home to some of the largest and most influential companies in the world, including two pharmaceutical companies that are not only making an impact in their industry but also making a difference in the communities they serve. From game-changing pharmaceutical innovations, to unprecedented sustainability efforts, to accessible healthcare initiatives, these companies are tirelessly working towards a better tomorrow and they are all an easy commute away from Tapestry Glenview. Schedule a tour of our luxury apartments in Northbrook today.