Predicting a better future
SummaryAt the Financial Times Global Pharmaceutical and Biotech Conference this week, the keynote address was given by M. Chris Viehbacher, Chief Executive Officer of Sanofi-aventis.
At the Financial Times Global Pharmaceutical and Biotech Conference this week, the keynote address was given by M. Chris Viehbacher, Chief Executive Officer of Sanofi-aventis.
In the context of global financial meltdown, three industry mega mergers, and the usual challenges facing ‘Big Pharma’ it was bound to be interesting to hear the perspective of an industry heavyweight such as Chris, who prior to Sanofi-aventis, was a member of the board of GSK, and President of its Pharmaceutical Operations in North America.
And what he thinks certainly will matter to Sanofi-aventis. As he describes the role of CEO “You’ve got your hands on the wheel, and you decide where to go”. Having been quoted in Forbes Magazine in its most recent issue, "Betting the farm and waiting for the next blockbuster is not going to work," in his FT keynote, Chris commented that whilst there was low growth for the industry in traditional markets, there was growth to be seen in emerging and non-traditional markets, and new models to explore, supported by a number of consumer ‘mega-trends’:
- An ageing population
- Increasing propensity of obesity and diabetes
- Increasing urbanization creating greater demand for medical services
- ‘Well being’ factors – like aesthetics and nutrition
- Time compression, and
- Communications and information technology
With this in mind, it was not surprising to see that he sees growth drivers for Sanofi-aventis including vaccines, diabetes, emerging markets, and OTC/OTX. In a sentence, Chris predicted “A much better next decade than the one we’ve just experienced”.
Chris expanded on this in a short VoxPop for PharmiWeb.com – see below