51 - 150 in alphabetical order of CVC unit: Yuko Sasahara, president and CEO, NTT Docomo Ventures

Yuko Sasahara was unveiled as president and CEO of NTT Docomo Ventures, the corporate venture capital (CVC) arm of Japan-based telecommunication firm NTT Group’s mobile network subsidiary, NTT Docomo, in mid-2021.

Sasahara took control of the unit from Takayuki Inagawa – himself a GCV Powerlist award winner in 2020 – after he was promoted to general manager and head of the innovation management department for NTT Docomo.

Previously, Sasahara had been responsible for co-creating new innovative businesses with entrepreneurs through NTT Docomo’s 39works programme. She has also worked in the company as a product and service design specialist and co-developed the concept and technical specifications of i-mode service, an internet-based service for mobile phones which was originally launched in 1999.

NTT Docomo Ventures was founded in 2008 and has invested in more than 150 companies in a bid to accelerate innovation on behalf of the NTT Group. It seeks out cooperation opportunities with entrepreneurs globally by providing capital from its CVC vehicles and business development initiatives with NTT’s group companies.

Among its recent investments, NTT Docomo Ventures has participated in the $66m series F round for open directory platform developer JumpCloud and in the venture round for TileDB, a business which has created a universal data engine. The unit also took part in the $200m series C round for internet-of-things technology developer Wiliot.

Sasahara holds a bachelor’s degree in home economics from Japan Women’s University as well as an MBA from the Sloan Fellows Program at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).