Strategy Articles - Pharmaceutical Executive

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Strategy Articles
The art and science of running a successful pharmaceutical company.

Fixing the Sales Model

June 1, 2007

It was like the end of the arms race last November when Pfizer announced it was slashing its national sales force by 20 percent. Coolly downplayed as cost-cutting by new CEO Jeffrey Kindler, the stunning move was met by industry insiders, Wall Street analysts, and the media with one humongous collective sigh of relief. Big Pharma was seen as having grown dangerously addicted to the detailing game over the past decade, with the top firms plowing more and more of their blockbuster profits into trying to keep up with Pfizer's "flood the zone" strategy and with less and less to show for it.

The Topic of Cancer

May 1, 2007

Today's highest science, most fierce competition—and make no mistake, biggest gains—are coming from the oncology arena. In fact, there are more than 380 cancer compounds in development, according to a recent report by IMS Health, with almost 100 of them in Phase III trials.

Make It New

April 1, 2007

Everyone agrees that by streamlining and downsizing, Big Pharma is taking a step in the right direction. What no one yet knows is if it's too little, too late. Or what "too little, too late" might look like. Or what else might work.

A Balancing Act

April 1, 2007

When Meryl Zausner was 25 and working at Colgate Palmolive, she had the kind of moment so many women in business have. She was attending a planning meeting for a laundry detergent product—the only woman in the room—when a thought occurred to her. "I asked, 'Excuse me, have any of you ever done a load of laundry?'" Zausner recalls. "It turned out that not one of them had, and yet here they were, deciding on the global strategy for how women are going to do laundry."

Media Audit: Stop the Presses!

April 1, 2007

And while reporters aren't writing any more about the industry, the topics they cover are a moving target.

Stealth Pharmas

April 1, 2007

Ever wonder how all those biotechs, specialty shops, and generics that make up Not Big Pharma ever manage to stay in business? Pharm Exec asked Bill Trombetta of St. Joseph's University to look at their books, analyzing their financial performance with the same metrics he uses for our annual Industry Audit. His findings may surprise you. In fact, when you check the bottom line, you just might consider changing teams.

Making the Switch

April 1, 2007

Dr. Doug Bierer felt like he was in a courtroom, waiting for the jury to render its verdict. It was June 2002, and executives from Procter & Gamble and its partner AstraZeneca had just finished presenting their bid to FDA's Non-Prescription Drugs Advisory Committee (NDAC) to market the popular heartburn medication, Prilosec (omeprazole), as an over-the-counter (OTC) drug.

He's Just Being Frank

March 1, 2007

Big, bold, and brash, Frank Baldino has built Cephalon into one of the nation's most dynamic biotechs. The company, based in suburban Philadelphia, is 20-years-old this year, and is already marking its birthday with a flurry of honors. In January, Cephalon was inducted into the World Economic Forum's Community of Global Growth Companies—a tribute to a 44 percent increase in annual revenue (to $1.67 billion in 2006) and its new footprints in Europe and Asia.

If I Ran Pfizer

March 1, 2007

When Pfizer CEO Jeffrey Kindler took the podium in January and announced that the struggling company would scale back and restructure its operations, he did more than just signal the end of an era. He proved that to turn around Pfizer—and in a way, the industry at large—companies need to hack away the parts that just aren't working anymore.

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