View all newsletters
Receive our newsletter - data, insights and analysis delivered to you
  1. Analysis
June 30, 2021

Our exclusive database of multinational pharmaceutical companies and their subsidiaries

The world’s leading pharmaceutical companies operate an average of 105.1 subsidiaries each. We reveal the global hotspots for these operations.

By Patrick Scott and Georges Corbineau

Pharmaceutical multinationals are far less likely to establish subsidiaries in North America than the average multinational company according to analysis of GlobalData’s exclusively compiled subsidiary database.

Companies establish subsidiaries for a variety of reasons: they can allow them to expand into profitable new markets, to increase revenue, and to diversify their holdings to better manage risk. As a vital component to a company’s expansion plans, the establishment of a subsidiary can offer insight into investment trends, with our database allowing you to see these investment patterns on a wider, sector level.

GlobalData’s multinational company database – which can be viewed in full on our sister site Investment Monitor – contains information for 2,188 of the world’s top multinational companies (MNCs) by revenue. Of these MNCs, 84 are in the pharmaceutical industry, representing 3.8% of the companies in our database.

These pharmaceutical companies are less likely than average to establish subsidiaries in North America (23.7% vs 27.8%) and are more likely to establish them in Western Europe (40.5% vs 36.8%).

Overall, the 84 pharmaceutical MNCs in our database operate 8,830 subsidiaries. This comes to an average of 105.1 subsidiaries per company, compared to an average of 99 for the entire database of 2,188 companies. It should be noted, however, that the number of subsidiaries is by no means evenly distributed within the sector. The most common number of subsidiaries for an MNC in the sector (the mode) is 11, while the median comes in at 38.5, indicating that the simple average is skewed heavily by the bigger parent companies.

US-based Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc has the largest number of subsidiaries among the pharmaceutical sector MNCs within our database with 1,025. This means it ranks in eighth place across our entire database when measured by the total number of subsidiaries.

Where has Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc established subsidiaries?

Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc’s subsidiaries are distributed across the world with 42.7% of the total located in Western Europe, the highest for any region. Some 342 of Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc's subsidiaries are located in its home country of the US, while the UK was the second most popular destination with 128.

After Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc, Eurofins Scientific SE had the second largest number of subsidiaries within the pharmaceutical industry MNCs in the database with 933, while Johnson & Johnson was third with 514 and Pfizer Inc was fourth with 458.

Where has Eurofins Scientific SE established subsidiaries?

Overall, 2,142 of the subsidiaries owned by the pharmaceutical MNCs in the database were located in the same country as the parent company was headquartered. This meant that MNCs in the sector were less likely than average to have a preference for domestic subsidiaries at 24.3%, with the figure for the entire database standing at 45.7%.

Methodology

GlobalData has compiled a list of top MNCs based on revenue. Any top companies that did not have a subsidiary were removed from the list. The latest company annual reports (2019 and 2020, where available) and websites were analysed for a total of 2,188 companies. For a subsidiary to be included, the parent company had to have a majority ownership/control in the subsidiary. Affiliates, associates, joint operations and joint ventures were included as long as the ownership criteria was met. Subsidiary information was captured at a country level. Country names were standardised. In total, 216,898 subsidiaries were captured.

Related Companies

NEWSLETTER Sign up Tick the boxes of the newsletters you would like to receive. A weekly roundup of the latest news and analysis, sent every Friday. The pharmaceutical industry's most comprehensive news and information delivered every month.
I consent to GlobalData UK Limited collecting my details provided via this form in accordance with the Privacy Policy
SUBSCRIBED

THANK YOU

Thank you for subscribing to Pharmaceutical Technology