Frost & Sullivan forecasts strong growth in generic drug market through 2017

Cost containment, patent expiries likely to generate increase in global revenues

LONDON — Patent expirations of key blockbuster drugs and efforts by payers to contain costs are likely to bring strong growth to the global generic drug market in the next few years as market-earned revenues grow by more than $100 billion, according to an analysis by research firm Frost & Sullivan.

The report, titled "Generic Pharmaceuticals Market — A Global Analysis" and focusing on the United States and Europe, also found that healthcare expenditure and sales revenues are poised to shift to India, China, Brazil, Turkey and South Korea.

Meanwhile, market-earned revenues are likely to grow from 2010's $123.85 billion to $231 billion in 2017 at a compound-annual growth rate of 9.29% between 2011 and 2018.

"The patent expiry of several major blockbuster drugs worth $150 billion between 2010 and 2017 will fuel the growth of the global generic pharmaceuticals market," Frost & Sullivan research analyst Aiswariya Chidambaram said. "The trend is shifting towards less competitive, yet commercially attractive segments such as difficult-to-produce generics, specialty generics and biosimilars."

The report noted a growth in strategic alliances between branded and generic drug companies for marketing rights and exclusivity for generic versions of such drugs as Pfizer's cholesterol-lowering drug Lipitor (atorvastatin), Merck's blood pressure drug Cozaar (losartan) and AstraZeneca's cholesterol drug Crestor (rosuvastatin). Meanwhile, Teva, Sandoz and Mylan increasingly are focused on biosimilars.

Still, strengthening regulations and price control measures could have a dampening effect.

"The increase in the prevalence of chronic disorders, newly reported diseases and aging populations have resulted in tremendous pressure placed on governments to implement cost-containment measures and curb rampant healthcare expenditure," Aiswariya said.


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