APAC Project Management VP I Global CRO


With its deep domain expertise and extensive APAC network, NGS Global successfully placed a senior clinical project development executive for a top five global CRO.


Our client was seeking an outstanding clinical development leader with multiple successful filings across key Asian markets. Reporting to the global SVP, the role would need to bring outstanding project management experience across a variety of therapeutic areas whilst also having terrific communication skills to work within the global business. The right candidate also needed to have strong industry credibility to liaise with global pharmaceutical clients (ideally with experience both working within CRO’s and leading an R&D function on the client side). The role would ideally be positioned in Singapore, but the client was flexible for the right candidate.

The Need

Our client required an entrepreneurial Japanese leader to establish the local subsidiary as well as beginning to build the business structure that would eventually lead to a small commercial unit for the Japan operation. The candidate needed to have strong relationships within the Japanese healthcare and hospitals network and could be an advocate for new, best-in-class alternatives to long-held products and processes. The role needed to report directly into global and have the ability to bridge the expectations of headquarters with established practices on the ground.

Our Search Process

Commissioned from global headquarters, NGS Global scouted out a comprehensive talent map of R&D leaders currently working at competing CRO’s or presently working in-house with leading pharmaceutical firms. A preference was placed on candidates that had experience on both sides. 

In addition, NGS Global leveraged its Tokyo, Singapore, Shanghai and Melbourne offices to interview candidates across the region as well as working with our US and EU partners to capture any senior leaders with APAC experience that may wish to repatriate. After several weeks of internal interviews, we presented the client with a longlist of four qualified candidates (with CV’s and our own qualitative assessments) and the client began a series of panel interviews with global counterparts to check “fit” and line management. 

The client eventually hired a candidate that was presently based in Singapore working with a pharmaceutical company (with previous CRO experience) and the time from search commencement to closure was ten weeks.

Our NGS Global Value-Add

• Deep domain expertise within R&D specific roles built from more than 15 years of specialization within the healthcare and life sciences industry. 

• Fewer off-limits of pharmaceutical and CRO clients in the region compared to larger global firms. 

• A recognized “brand” amongst regional top tier candidates enabling quick access. 


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