Nontraditional Players Essential for Pharmaceutical Survival

10 February 2010 (Last Updated February 10th, 2010 18:30)

IT companies, large retailers and telecommunication firms will help reshape the pharmaceutical marketplace and are integral to survival in the industry, according to a new report by Ernst & Young. The findings addressed in Progressions, Pharma 3.0, Ernst & Young's annual global

IT companies, large retailers and telecommunication firms will help reshape the pharmaceutical marketplace and are integral to survival in the industry, according to a new report by Ernst & Young.

The findings addressed in Progressions, Pharma 3.0, Ernst & Young's annual global pharmaceutical report indicate that emerging new non-traditional companies in the sector will prompt pharmaceutical companies to broaden their focus from producing new medicines to delivering "healthy outcomes", a process that will be driven by creative partnerships and innovation.

Early examples of attempts to adapt to what Ernst & Young terms the Pharma 3.0 environment include incorporating new smart phone applications, and other technologies to capitalise on growing trends for patients to play an increasingly active role in managing their own health care.

New innovative partnerships with other non-traditional partners such as micro-lenders to bridge affordability gaps, or supply chain partnerships with food companies with existing distribution and infrastructure networks could also bring high value but will be difficult to structure.

Ernst & Young EMEIA Life Sciences leader Patrick Flochel said that while this has always been an innovation-driven industry, the winners in Pharma 3.0 will approach innovation in new ways.

"Innovation is no longer just about the product – it now encompasses how you do business, who you do business with and how you mobilise your resources," Flochel said.

As part of the report, Ernst & Young surveyed key business development executives from 24 unique companies, including 11 of the 15 largest global pharmaceutical companies and members of new industries expected to enter the Pharma 3.0 ecosystem.

Among the key findings 92% of respondents believed that new entrants will enter the Pharma 3.0 ecosystem, with e-health, mobile health and new medical technology firms being the most likely new entrants.

Despite good understanding of the trend, 67% of respondents said they are not well prepared, 50% of respondents expect deals will become more challenging and only 2% expect that they will become less challenging.