Want Good News? We Have It!
The chaos, contentiousness and calamity that face you on your news feeds every
morning can be discouraging. Thank goodness we’re in an industry that continues to
see up arrows.
Oh, we have our problems, of course: an unsure future for new discoveries, increasing costs to launch, a less-than-ideal public image, a changing media landscape that
presents challenges about reaching HCPs, the difficulties in educating patients and
Still, the numbers show that we’re moving in the right direction. In this issue’s Top 50 Pharma Companies, we are observing increased growth: 2017 revenue was up $56.9B over the previous year, a jump of
7% after 5% growth the year before.
The biggest keep getting bigger: the Top 50 are growing faster than the total market. Worldwide total
prescription drug sales grew at a rate of 2.6%. R&D spend is growing as well at $165B, up 3.9% over
159B in 2016. And we saw a 104% increase in FDA approvals of NMEs & Biologicals for a total of 55,
vs. 2016’s low of 27. Oncology drugs lead the share of the total market with $104B, Anti-rheumatics are
next at $55.7B and anti-diabetics at $46.1B. And mergers and acquisitions are proceeding at a hot pace:
the J&J acquisition of Actelion, Gilead’s purchase of Kite Pharma, Thermo Fischer’s takeover of Patheon,
Takeda’s $5.2B purchase of Ariad, and numerous others.
In addition, we see positive signs in the development of new technologies and therapeutics. As reported
in this issue, the outlook for both digital medicines and gene therapy is bright. We anticipate that this
rise will continue. Look for our report on the Cleveland Clinic’s Top Ten interesting trends later this
year. And check out futurist Bertalan Mesco’s article in this issue. He has been featured on numerous
programs, in major publications, and has spoken at top conferences on what this industry can look forward to.
Bad news? It will always be with us. But our attitude is that good news will always outrun it. And the
inspiring things we see happening are further evidence of that. Forward!
And always, please keep the feedback coming. It all goes to making the magazine better for all of us.
Cari Kraft, Publisher
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