Between now and 2012, growth in the European generics market is expected to expand at less than 10% a year according to Ms Frances Cloud, co-head of healthcare investment banking at Nomura International, as she told the World Generics Medicines Congress Europe 2009, held in London, UK, in February.
“The future of the European generic medicines industry is under serious threat, which places both the sustainability of European health care and the European industrial competitiveness at serious risk,” warned Mr Greg Perry, Director General of the European Generics medicines Association (EGA), at an EGA conference on healthcare sustainability on 31 March 2009 in Prague, Czech Republic.
In December 2008, the Journal of the American Medical Association published an article on the clinical equivalence of generic and brand-name drugs used in cardiovascular disease by Aaron Kesselheim, et al. of Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.
The developing countries India and China represent growing markets for active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) from western regulated markets. This is the conclusion of Ms Kate Kuhrt, Director of Generics and API Intelligence at Thomson Reuters. “With the pharmaceutical markets in India and China expected to continue to grow at double-digit rates, while traditional pharmaceutical markets, such as the US, Japan and Western Europe remain stagnant, it is no surprise that many API manufacturers have set their eyes on India and China”, she states.
Pressure to control pharmaceutical expenditure and price competition among pharmaceutical companies is fuelling the development of generic medicines markets in ambulatory care in Europe.
The introduction of generic price-regulated systems in many European countries, the trend towards international generic medicine companies, and competition from Indian companies emphasises the need to gain insight into international prices of generic medicines.
Pfizer, the world's biggest drugmaker, is seeking deals with generic pharmaceutical manufacturers to increase sales of medicines that have lost patent protection.
Watson Pharmaceuticals announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire privately held Arrow Group for US$1.75 billion (Euros 1.25 billion) in cash and stock. The combination of Watson and Arrow will result in a global pharmaceutical company with over US$3 billion (Euros 2.15 billion) in revenue, commercial operations in over 20 countries, and a robust product portfolio and pipeline. Watson expects the transaction to close in the second half of 2009, and be accretive to cash earnings per share in 2010 before synergies.
Just a year after swallowing the US$7.4 billion (Euros 5.3 billion) Barr Laboratories buy, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries is ready for another ‘major’ acquisition and may look beyond generic drugs for the purchase, CEO, Mr Shlomo Yanai, said. According to him, Teva is seeking targets to diversify in branded medicines as well as increase its market share in generic drugs. “If we find a target that is in line with our strategy in the specialty area, in the biotechnology area, we definitely are going to consider it,” Mr Yanai said. “We are not limiting ourselves to buying only generic companies.” He declined to name possible targets.
In a speech on 23 June 2009 before the Center for American Progress in Washington, DC, USA, Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairman Jon Leibowitz said that an internal FTC analysis projects that stopping collusive ‘pay-for-delay’ settlements between brand and generic pharmaceutical firms would save consumers US$3.5 billion (Euros 2.5 billion) a year and also reap significant savings for the federal government, which pays approximately one-third of all prescription drug costs. Mr Leibowitz urged Congress to pass pending legislation to ban or restrict such anticompetitive patent settlements, in which manufacturers of brand-name drugs pay potential generic competitors to stay out of the market, as a way to control prescription drug costs, restore the benefits of generic competition, and help pay for healthcare reform.