No company likes to lose an integral part of its marketing team--and especially not to a competitor. Bristol-Myers Squibb is taking the news particularly personally, suing a former account manager and her new agency for misappropriation of trade secrets.
Layoffs are always big news in pharma, as they are seen as an indicator of the health of the industry. Companies don't like to have to announce them, but when they decide to, getting plenty of attention becomes important. That is to impress upon investors that their CEOs are making the hard decisions needed to keep costs in line. Of course employees are interested. They know from the inside what is about to happen, and having lived through the awful anticipation, they want to see what the carnage is really going to be.
The patent cliff is often the big culprit. One might think that a one-to-one relationship could be graphed between what is happening with the patent cliff and layoffs, but that is not the case. Pharma analysis company EvaluatePharma has forecast that there were $41 billion in patent sales at risk in 2011, a year in which the top 10 pharma layoffs amounted to 26,500. In 2012, the peak year, EvalutePharma said a whopping $67 billion was at risk. In that year, the top layoffs tallied more than 34,600. Then in 2013, when at-risk sales fell to only $29 billion, we have a total for the top 10 of nearly 27,900. Click here to read the full report on FiercePharma >>
Chatting with the public is not in pharma's comfort zone. Drugmakers are adept at the one-way communication known as direct-to-consumer advertising, and some of them deal well with the media. Some even know how to work with patient groups. Back-and-forth with doctors? Pharma's daily bread.
But put your average, everyday drug company in the middle of a public conversation, and it freezes up. In fact, of the 50 largest drugmakers worldwide, only half even dabble in social media. Only 10 use all three of the oldest, biggest social sites--Facebook, Twitter and YouTube--according to a new study by the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics. And within that small group, few are actually interacting with patients and the public. Click here to read the full report >>
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GlaxoSmithKline's albiglutide, now dubbed Tanzeum for the U.S. market, nabbed FDA approval Tuesday. Now, the drug will go up against a triad of other GLP-1 treatments, including Novo Nordisk's powerhouse Victoza and AstraZeneca's exanatide franchise.
Irritable bowel syndrome is tricky. Symptoms come and go, they vary from person to person, and they're not dinner-table conversation. But Forest Laboratories and Ironwood Pharmaceuticals need to get patients talking about their IBS with constipation--because they have a drug for that.
Amid new layoffs and plummeting revenues, the pharma sales force continued to decline in North America and Europe in 2013.
Sanofi has added a new Twitter handle to its Iberian lineup, @Sanofifarmacia, designed to create a pool of reference information and help community pharmacies in Spain promote their businesses.
Polish prosecutors have charged 13 people in connection with the GlaxoSmithKline bribery probe in their country.
GlaxoSmithKline says it's rolling out sales and marketing reforms around the world. Apparently, the changes come none too soon. The British drugmaker opened another bribery investigation, this time in Iraq, to check out allegations that it paid government-employed physicians to promote its products.