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Global Financial Crisis Making Biotech Business Model Unsustainable, According to Ernst & Young
Date:5/4/2009

ion in 2008.
  • Industry deal making remained brisk. The total value of M&As involving US biotechs reached more than US$28.5 billion -- a record high when adjusting for "megadeals" that took place in prior years. In Europe, M&A transactions totaled US$5 billion.

  • "Like firms in most markets, European biotechs were clearly impacted by the financial crisis," said Jurg Zurcher, Ernst & Young's Biotechnology Leader for Europe, Middle East, India and Africa. "Many are scrambling to raise capital, restructure operations and use deals creatively to survive. Consolidation seems inevitable."

    New pathways to sustainability

    The challenge for the industry, according to Beyond borders, is turning an existential threat into a Darwinian opportunity. The potential solution lies in four paradigm-shifting trends that promise to accelerate the transition to sustainable business models:

    Generics: Generics based on today's top blockbusters should loosen governments' and insurers' budgetary constraints and mitigate pricing pressures on innovative drugs, permitting better margins.

    US healthcare reform: The potential shift toward universal healthcare coverage in the world's largest drug market will likely incorporate pay-for-performance in reimbursement decisions. Incentives for true innovation should help biotechs sustain returns.

    Personalized medicine: Personalized medicine will increase the relative value of research and early development -- biotech's traditional strengths -- giving biotechs more bargaining power and better valuations. Meanwhile, more efficient drug development will lower R&D costs, making it easier for firms to make the journey to self-sufficiency.

    Globalization: Growing strengths in emerging markets will facilitate creative solutions -- from n
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    SOURCE Ernst & Young
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