We spoke with Laura Child, our Head of Research & Strategy, who shares the intel she’s collated throughout 2023 so far.
Although there has been some slowdown in life science M&A through 2022 and into 2023, we are still seeing significant acquisitions take place by large Pharma (Pfizer and Seagen ($43M), Merck and Prometheus ($11M), for example), who are looking to line their pipeline with what has become a more attractively priced market. It’s looking fairly likely that we will see a rebound in 2023, although this sits within a period of uncertainty.
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Capabilities to master and space to fill
A lot of larger CDMOs are looking to build out their capacity in the C> space – or enter it for the first time. It’s a truly exciting space that has a staggering Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) cited by various sources to be between 18-24% during the forecast period 2022 to 2030. As we see more new C> products move closer towards approval, we see a market that needs to prepare for the complex therapy launches and commercial supply chain, underpinned by a go-to-market model that moves away from those used for traditional therapies.
In parallel, as Covid-19 programs are phasing out, some CDMOs are finding themselves with excess capacity that they are trying to fill. They are looking towards lead generation as a way to address the capacity gap.
What’s in a name?
We are seeing an ever-increasing appetite for ‘names’ beyond brand in the sector – whether it’s for products (such as cell lines), data platforms or go-to-market offerings. With so many elements to be named, it can be hard to find white space to own. We are seeing a growth in clients who undertake solid research foundations in order to ensure a name that has the greatest chance of success in the market.
Internal belief systems
Even with a strong brand and messaging platform in place, alongside clear brand guidelines, it is imperative that the internal audience understands and believes in the brand. ramarketing is supporting customers who need to take their employees on the brand journey. Even as the brand evolves, which it will (and it must), it is imperative that the brand continues to build an emotional connection with its audiences, both internal and external. For those who are less adept at internal communications, we have plenty of ideas to help you activate your brand internally.
There is currently a war on talent, which is impacting in-house marketing hires in the life science sector. Issues around recruitment have led ramarketing to do multiple secondments. Alongside this, it has become hard to retain talent across an organization, which impacts consistency and continuity. Employer branding remains as important as ever, as well as ensuring employees are heard and understood. Volatility in the workforce, which is also being seen at Senior/C-suite levels, can impact customer experience and throw doubt to external audiences, including potential investors.
We have seen governments across the world get more involved with the development of new therapies as a response to COVID. They are paying more attention to pharma in general, from pricing through timelines to market and evidencing. They are also keen to protect supply chains by looking to onshoring capabilities.
Dealing with inflation-aggravated financial pressures, governments in the UK and Europe are trying to control spending on drugs using clawbacks, limiting price rises and drug budgets, and assessing if a drug is good value for money. And in the US, the biggest pricing shake-up for decades is underway. The government will have the power to negotiate prices for some of the most expensive treatments purchased by Medicare, the taxpayer-funded healthcare scheme for retirees. It has also fixed annual caps on “out of pocket” costs for Medicare beneficiaries and penalizes drugmakers that raise prices above inflation.
The truce on drug prices between big pharma and politicians during the coronavirus pandemic ended at the beginning of the year. Pharma, seen as saviors in the last couple of years, may be returning to the pre-pandemic perception of putting profits before patients. Moderna was able to charge a premium for their vaccines during the COVID pandemic – they received a lot of support from the US Government, which affected their image. They are now attempting to refresh their relevance and renew their post-COVID image.
25th March, 2023
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