The lengths research companies go to protect their IP

Developing a novel pharmaceutical treatment costs one billion dollars on average. Companies that engage in pharmaceutical research and development understand that many of their innovations won’t be approved by the Food and Drug Administration. When they do get approval, pharmaceutical companies can earn billions of dollars a year in revenue depending on the market they serve. All pharmaceutical companies have one thing in common regardless of the disease class they treat, and that’s protecting their intellectual property at any cost.

Competing manufacturers, CROs, and research laboratories all have an interest in acquiring comparator medications so they can conduct the studies needed to develop their own innovations. As a result of the competitive environment, pharmaceutical companies have to find creative ways to limit their exposure to the risks of reverse engineering.

Some manufactures like Novo Nordisk have taken steps to reduce specialty distributors of their Novoseven hemophilia treatment. Their original distribution strategy included having dozens of authorized partners that help them get their product to market. After many competitors bought these products to compare to their innovative offerings, they reduced them down to seven hand-picked authorized distributors of record. Due to Novo Nordisk’s efforts, it’s much more difficult and costly today to acquire Novoseven than it was just eight years ago.

The latest trend is manufacturers distributing their products directly to patients and providers. This is a very expensive and cumbersome undertaking. Thanks to the rising costs of pharmaceutical treatments and the increase in competitors sourcing comparator agents, it makes sense to handle distribution in-house. In the case of treatments that cost $240,000 per year, it is certainly worth having tight control on who gets the medication and more importantly who won’t have access to it.

These limitations make our job at GSI more challenging, but we love a good challenge. Our saving grace is that we have a wide network of distribution partners that can source our customers’ comparators in the United States and all over the world. We look forward to being of service for your comparator sourcing requirements, so please get in touch with us today to start the process.

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