Life Sciences Newsbrief – July 2012

New Leadership Announcement

Prabh (Bob) Singh appointed National Leader, Pharmaceuticals and Life Sciences

Congratulations to Bob Singh who succeeds Gord Jans as the new National Leader, Pharmaceuticals and Life Sciences. Currently, Bob is an associate partner in PwC’s tax practice focusing on corporate income tax matters for both large and medium size businesses in Canada, specifically in the Greater Toronto Area. With over 17 years of experience, Bob has been delivering corporate tax consulting services in the areas of corporate income tax audits, tax treaties, cross-border planning, SR&ED tax credits and corporate reorganizations. He has also worked closely with many Canadian private, public and multinational companies in the Pharmaceuticals and Life Sciences sector.

Thank you to Gord for his solid leadership and significant contribution to the Pharmaceutical and Life Sciences sector. Gord will continue to help clients succeed in this sector in his new role as a specialist partner in PwC’s transfer pricing practice.

Thought Leadership

Implications of the US Supreme Court ruling on healthcare
The US Supreme Court ruling upholding the Affordable Care Act re-injects a sense of urgency into the transformation of an industry that represents nearly one-fifth of the US economy. Implementation deadlines that once seemed far off are now rapidly approach, putting fresh pressure on health organizations to devise innovative ways of delivering high-quality, affordable care.

The Court ruled that a core provision of the Affordable Care Act (the requirement that every American carry health insurance) is a tax and as such, is constitutional. The ruling also permits the federal government to pursue a broad expansion of the Medicaid health program for the poor, removed the penalty for states that choose not to expand Medicaid to 133% of the Federal Poverty Level.

This report from the Health Research Institute shares analysis of the implications of the ruling for health insurers, providers, pharmaceutical and life sciences, state governments, and employers.

Click here to read the full report

Biotech ― What’s next for the business of big molecules?
There’s bad news and good: productivity’s still low, and money scarce, but the industry’s no longer trying to ‘go it alone’. A growing number of biotech and pharma companies are joining forces to tackle the challenges they face with increasingly creative alliances with new partners and in new territories.

If the biotech industry’s contribution to productivity is still questionable, what about the business model on which it’s traditionally relied? We argued two years ago that this model – based as it is on external investment, typically venture capital, in an innovative idea arising from an entrepreneurial source – was collapsing. Again, the news is mixed. Indeed global financial crisis has exacerbated this.

On the upside, US venture capitalists are back on the scene; venture funding in the domestic biotech sector topped US$4.7 billion in 2011, 22% more than in 2010. On the downside, the total number of deals dipped again, after perking up in 2010. And first-round financings fell by 19%; only 98 of the deals struck in 2011 involved start-ups.

Corporate venturing has been a saviour for some Big Pharma's productivity issues whilst others have directed their investments towards academia.

The number of alliances is growing again, including alliances with new partners - philanthropic VC, academic medical centres, competitors and new technology players.

Click here to read the full report

Unleashing value: The changing payment landscape for the US pharmaceutical industry
Five major forces are dramatically altering the pharmaceutical industry’s revenue models and creating new notions of value. These forces are hastening the arrival of an outcomes-based world in which the value of a drug tracks more closely with its impact on patient health. Significant barriers remain, particularly between drug manufacturers and health insurers. This report explores possible paths for pharmaceutical companies to unlock value, improve clinical and economic evidence, and continue to build transparency with other health organizations.

Click here to download the full report