Shibuya Longevity Night — a kick-off by startups working to realize healthy longevity — was held on the 19th October 2022. It was organized in collaboration with Bilal Kharouni, founder and CEO of ekei labs, who came to Japan using Shibuya’s startup visa program. Maria Marinova of Apollo Health Ventures and Mehdi Hamadi from ekei labs joined as speakers to share market trends in the longevity sector and fundraising opportunities for longevity startups.
Bilal became interested in researching longevity and anti-aging supplements when his co-founder was researching nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN), a nucleotide with anti-aging effects. Japan’s position as having the world’s most elderly population, its well-developed market of supplements for the elderly, and the ease to acquire talent from the numerous academic institutions already researching aging makes it the premier country for a longevity startup. Bilal was able to take advantage of the new startup visa scheme by Shibuya City to found ekei labs, which uses biomarkers to determine the presence and progression of various diseases associated with aging.
He explained why he started this event: “We want to help the community grow in Tokyo. Longevity is getting more and more traction, and it’s fantastic. We want to provide opportunities for like-minded people to connect and learn about exciting initiatives.”
An engaging networking session followed the presentations, with startups, investors, and founders connecting and exchanging ideas over drinks.
Shibuya Startup Support provides support for startup visas and other services necessary for overseas founders to launch their businesses in Japan. If you are interested in taking the first step of your startup journey in Japan, please don’t hesitate to get in touch!
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