Research Reveals New Launch Standards for First-to-Launch Pharma and Biotech Companies in the U.S.

PharmExec.com - Authors: Maya Desai, Blake Beber, Eduardo Schur & Justin Zamirowski

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It’s no secret the life sciences market is changing – fast. Even before the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) created new rules for the healthcare industry, research shows major shifts in best practices for launching products are materializing in the pharmaceutical and biotech markets.

From 2016-2018, 27 companies – representing treatment options ranging from orphan drugs to specialty products to chronic therapies – launched products for the first time in the United States, and data is available for 25. Rigorous data analysis to identify the key trends and factors driving launch performance uncovered significant differentiators that emerged since prior analysis of all product launches from 2011-2015 in the U.S.

The performance of these 2016-2018 newcomers illuminates emerging new launch standards for pharmaceutical and biotech companies. Importantly, the results defy some long-held conventional beliefs in these industries, including the assumption (based on the analysis from 2011-2015) that 60% of drugs will fail on market. They also challenge these so-called “truisms” for securing the best possible results:

We can delay investing in launch closer to approval.

  • It is best for us to launch as close to approval as possible.
  • We must minimize investment prior to launch to reduce impact on future profitability.
  • Launching in a specialty setting leads to more success.
  • Oncology-focused products drive the most launch successes.

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