martes, 13 de marzo de 2018

PMLIVE Top Pharma List (III) The good, the bad and the ugly




So how did 2017 close out? Forecasts from GlobalData, based on predicted global revenues to November 2017, show that the make-up of the Top 10 companies in 2017 closely resembles that of 2016. But that doesn’t tell the whole story. 

Pfizer comfortably remains the world’s largest pharma company (by global Rx sales), with an estimated 12.1% growth in 2017, lifting its revenues beyond $50bn for the first time since 2012. This was driven largely by higher-than-expected sales of its pneumonia vaccine, Prevnar, which accounted for more than 11% of its total revenues in the third quarter of 2017. Its closest rival, Novartis, also grew impressively - boasting a projected uplift in Rx sales of 9%.

The global pharmaceutical industry is once again giving out mixed messages. US drug approvals hit a 21-year high in 2017 and rose in the EU too - but beneath the surface, some of pharma’s most profitable products appear to be growing old while the pipelines of many seem worryingly dry.

2018 looks set to be an interesting year - coloured by the prospect of M&A, patent expiry and pricing challenges, but also invigorated by exciting advances in immunotherapy and oncology and the push towards curative therapies. One commentator has remarked that while some companies’ pipelines are in terrible shape, in certain therapy areas - notably cancer - innovation is so rich it could become a problem. It’s a narrative worthy of Oscar season. With the industry poised for another year of the good, the bad and the ugly, here’s the director’s cut on a classic trilogy.

Beyond Pfizer, the biggest positive movers in the top 20 include Shire, Bayer and Merck & Co

Shire’s incredible revenue growth of almost 57%, helped by its $32bn acquisition of Baxalta in 2016, lifted it into the top 20 for the first time in its history. However, investors fear that challenges in the $11bn haemophilia market could lead to a slump in the haemophilia business it inherited through the Baxalta purchase. Bayer’s growth - a healthy 14.6% - was stimulated by a steady performance by Xarelto in Europe and Asia, and strong sales of its eye medicine Eylea in Japan, Europe and Canada. Nonetheless, new rival innovation in the anticoagulant market is already presenting challenges for Xarelto
For Merck, double-digit growth (10%) of its Rx business saw the company consolidate its position as the 5th biggest prescription drug company - with forecast sales of $38.6bn. The organisation has made significant strides in oncology, cardiovascular and CNS.

Naturally, other leading companies found 2017 much more turbulent. The most notable being Teva, whose global prescriptions sales are forecast to have slumped by a hefty 61%. The Israeli multinational has blamed the decline on the increase in generic drug approvals by the FDA, saying that increased competition and ‘customer consolidation’ had hurt sales. 

The only other top company to experience negative double-digit growth was Gilead Sciences, whose global Rx sales are forecast to slide by more than 13%. The fall is not wholly unexpected - this was flagged by the company in early 2017 as the double-edged sword of developing curative treatments became apparent. Gilead’s success with its curative Hep C portfolio had ultimately led to a diminishing population of target patients and played havoc with its revenues. The company hopes its $12bn acquisition of Kite Pharma (August 2017) will help it steal a march on the lucrative CAR-T market through its treatment for advanced lymphoma. Despite the bumpy ride, Gilead remains in the global top 10.

In Europe, the top 10 takes on a very different shape. Sanofi has overtaken Roche and Pfizer to reclaim its place at the top of the rankings. GlobalData forecasts that prescription sales at Sanofi grew by 7.7% in 2017, lifting its European revenues beyond $10bn for the first time since 2011. Sanofi’s success enabled it to steal the number one position from Roche, despite the Swiss giant itself managing revenue growth of 3.8%. Elsewhere, GSK’s Rx revenues slid by 5%, although estimated sales of almost $7.7bn were still enough to maintain its place as the fourth largest pharma company in Europe. Likewise, Gilead maintained fifth position despite a 17% drop in revenues.

The second half of the top 10 European companies is taken up by five companies that do not feature among the top 10 global pharma. AstraZeneca, Takeda, Astellas Pharma, Novo Nordisk and Recordati take up the final five positions, though only two - Takeda (+3.9%) and Astellas (+9.3%) - recorded growth. Novo Nordisk revenues fell by 6%. (Más)


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PMLIVE Top Pharma List (II) 2021-2023
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