That, at least, is the lesson we took from a preview of Quintiles’ new survey of biopharma executives, managed care executives and consumers released June 15. Dubbed The New Health Report, the survey includes some interesting data on different perspectives about Big Pharma business development activities.
Including this nugget: To the question, “What is the impact of large biopharma mergers on innovation?” 53% of biopharma execs said they reduce opportunities for innovation, versus only 15% who see mega-merger as improving innovation; on the other hand, 39% of managed care executives see mega-mergers as improving opportunities for innovation, versus 37% who see them reduced.
In other words, more managed care executives seem to be believe that consolidation in the Big Pharma sector will improve R&D productivity than do biopharma execs.
Quintiles also surveyed attitudes about other business development and structural trends in pharma, asking whether each group expects to see more partnerships, more mergers, more focus on emerging markets, and more outsourcing.
In each case, biopharma executives see doing more—in essence, painting a picture of an industry that relies on external R&D and external (ie, non-US/EU) markets. That’s no surprise, especially to readers around here.
Managed care execs, on the other had, were less likely to predict “more” of those activities. (See chart).
Put another way, they appear to have greater faith that pharma companies can deliver sufficient returns on their own and in established markets than do industry executives themselves. (Or, perhaps, they have greater skepticism about biopharma companies’ ability to follow-through on their intentions to look outside.)
Those discrepancies are interesting, but we sure don’t know what to make of them. Are biopharma companies doing a better job of putting on a brave face about R&D productivity when they talk to their customers than they are with their own employees? Or do “outsiders” with a big stake in the industry have a better read on how business development activities really play out?
What do you think? We invite your comments.
PS. There is much more in the Quintiles report on attitudes about the industry; the full report is available here.