Global Oncology Drugs Market - Competitive Analysis

Oncology drugs and medications have become a blooming business for players in the pharmaceutical industry. Major pharmaceutical companies are focused on manufacturing and development of oncology drug. Market players have oncology drugs in pipeline, which are expected to be in the market as potential medications in near future. Also, the global oncology market is expected to gain a significant traction with the increasing prevalence of cancer. According to the National Cancer Institute, cancer is among the leading causes of death worldwide, which accounted for around 14 million new cases and 8.2 million cancer-related deaths in 2012. The number of new cancer cases is projected to rise to 22 million in near future. The major competitors are focused on developing efficient treatment for specific type of cancer which is expected to be a prominent factor to augment the global oncology drugs market.

Major manufacturers in the oncology drugs market include:

  • Roche
  • Celgene
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • Pfizer
  • Sanofi
  • Bristol-Meyers Squibb
  • Novartis
  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • Eli Lily
  • Merck & Co.

Top 5 company described for competitive analysis in detail:

  1. Roche is a world leader in oncology, which is engaged in developing new approaches for advanced cancer treatment. Roche operates in two segments, which includes pharmaceuticals and diagnostics with annual sales of US$ 39.1 Bn and US$ 11.5 Bn respectively. Roche is at the forefront of cancer immunotherapy with ten investigational drug candidates currently in the clinical development phase. In 2016, the company entered into 10 new clinical collaboration agreements to explore drug combinations for maximizing therapeutic benefits and develop the lead immunotherapy drug. The company has set up imCORE, a network of 21 academic institutions working with Roche to advance research into cancer immunotherapies, thus contributing to enhance the global oncology drugs market in the near future.
  2. Johnson and Johnson operates in three business segments namely consumer, pharmaceutical and medical devices. The business of Johnson & Johnson is conducted by more than 230 operating companies located in 60 countries worldwide. In 2016, the company has invested around US$ 9.1 Bn in research and development activities. Janssen, the pharmaceutical division of J&J registered the oncology drug sales of around US$ 5.9 Bn among the total pharmaceutical therapeutic area sales. Janssen is focused on strategic collaborations for the development of cancer therapeutics, which in turn favors the oncology drugs market. For instance, in November, 2017, Janssen collaborated with Zymeworks, Inc. to develop six bispecific antibodies based on Azymetric and Effector Function Enhancement and Control Technology (EFECT) platforms for research, development, and commercialization with a potential to generate US$ 1.5 Bn. High sales of IMBRUVICA (ibrutinib) and DARZALEX (daratumumab) were due to increasing patient uptake, additional country launches, and additional indications, which contributed to the growth of oncology drugs.
  3. Pfizer, Inc. develops oncology therapies that provide maximum efficacy while minimizing adverse effects on the patient. The current portfolio of oncology drugs covers a range of cancers. The company studies these therapies alone and in combination with other treatments to improve the lives of cancer patients. Pfizer’s overall strategy is anchored on innovation for developing new medicines and vaccines through collaborations and business relationships which is expected to bolster the oncology drugs market. For instance, Pfizer partnered with Merck KGaA for building a strong portfolio in immuno-oncology, Biolnvent International AB to develop antibodies to advance the novel technology platform of cancer vaccine as well as business relationship with IBM Watson for drug discovery by identifying potential new targets and combination therapies in immune-oncology.
  4. Novartis’s aims to develop approaches for extending the lives of people suffering from cancer, by adopting the strategy to use science-based innovation for delivering better patient outcomes in growing areas of healthcare. Novartis operates in two business segments namely Novartis Oncology and Novartis Pharmaceuticals, which together form Innovative Medicines Division. The Novartis Oncology segment contributed around 39% of its net sales, it was valued around US$ 12.8 Bn. Increase in revenue is attributed to the strong performance for oncology products Tafinlar + Mekinist, a combination therapy for advanced melanoma, and Jakavi, for blood cancers. Novartis is leading provider of cancer treatments, following the acquisition of oncology products from GlaxoSmithKline in 2015. In 2016, the company collaborated with Surface Oncology to bolster the cancer immunotherapy pipeline that will provide access to four preclinical programs. Also, with a licensing agreement with Xencor, it plans to co-develop two bispecific antibodies designed to target acute myeloid leukemia and B-cell malignancies, thereby aiding the growth of oncology drugs market.
  5. Sanofi operates through two business segments namely pharmaceuticals and vaccines. Sanofi gains insights through its network of collaborations with biotech companies such as Immunogen and Evotec, academic cancer centers such as Institut Gustave Roussy, Institut Curie, and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, enabling superior use of software, analytics, and new technology, which helps to increase its productivity, maximize return on R&D investment, and accelerate the development of new products. Sanofi Oncology has a large number of collaborations and alliances to support its R&D portfolio. In 2015, Sanofi collaborated with Regeneron focusing on cancer immunotherapy to generate high value development candidates in the emerging field of immuno-oncology and to accelerate its development pipeline in the oncology drugs market. In 2016, the company entered into a collaboration with Innate Pharma to develop innovative bispecific antibody formats engaging natural killer (NK) cells to kill tumor cells. Also, it collaborated with Warp Drive Bio to develop drugs targeting human oncogenes, thus accelerating the innovations for oncology drugs.
  • Novel and targeted oncology drugs manufactured by the major competitors in oncology drug market are geared towards the treatment of specific type of cancer with premium prices, without generic competition from the competitors, as these biologic treatments have an enhanced patent protection. Strategic collaborations and rise in research and development is the basic approach adopted by the manufacturers, as it helps to develop and access knowledge and increase the understanding in new areas of science, thereby accelerating the global oncology drugs market.
  • The major strategic collaborations included in the competitive analysis include:
    • Sanofi and Regeneron collaborated to develop REGN2810, with an overall expenditure of US$ 325 million each towards developing the therapy currently in the Phase I
    • Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) and CytomX Therapeutics collaborated to develop four target cancer therapies using CytomX’s Probody drug discovery platform. The collaboration would provide CytomX with a net US$ 1.2 Bn.

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