Pharma 2020: Taxing times ahead

In a previous Pharma 2020 series white paper, Pharma 2020: Challenging business models, we discussed that the Pharma industry will have to find new way of doing business. They will need to be more collaborative in addition to improving R&D productivity, reducing costs, expanding their presence in emerging markets, switching from selling medicine to managing outcomes and embracing the changes taking place in the broader healthcare arena. Those changes, together with the political and economic trends now shaping the general commercial environment, will have major repercussions on the way in which Pharma is taxed.

The fifth paper in the series, Pharma 2020: Taxing times ahead, focuses on the challenges ahead but also shows how companies can adapt their tax planning to support the provision of outcomes-based healthcare and remain competitive.

The report anticipates that:

  • A new way of doing business is inevitable, but new models will make tax planning more complex and increase the effective tax rate for the industry. Pharmaceutical companies will form more partnerships, alliances and turn to M&A as well as embarking on a programme where they will provide diverse services beyond the traditional product offering and to fill the product pipeline. This model could cause the effective tax rate to rise, make transfer pricing procedures more complicated and potentially result in a greater disconnect between revenue and costs from a tax point of view.
  • An expanded customer base, created by wider access to healthcare and growing populations in emerging markets will increase profitability. Further, healthcare reforms, technology advancements and other market forces are driving outcomes-focused healthcare delivery. Pharmaceutical companies will need to create greater value and demonstrate effectiveness by shifting from a purely product-centric focus to a broader service model, complementing traditional products with holistic packages of services to improve patient outcomes. Increased end-market services are taxed differently than products resulting in a shift in the tax burden.
  • There will be heightened competition between states and among emerging market countries and those historically favourable to the industry to attract pharmaceutical and life sciences companies through tax incentives. As such, there will be a shift in profit growth to the East and increased outsourcing of manufacturing to emerging markets.
  • Long-term business plans to grow, buy, merge or sell will be the crux, not the afterthought, of tax strategy for pharmaceutical companies. In the future, tax strategy will be even more closely aligned with business development strategy, and tax executives will occupy an important seat at the table as pharma companies contemplate business model changes.

 

More information

Pharma 2020: The vision, first in the series highlights a number of issues that will have a major bearing on the industry over the next 11 years. The publication outlines the changes we believe will best help pharmaceutical companies realise the potential the future holds to enhance the value they provide to shareholders and society alike.

Pharma 2020: Virtual R&D, the second in the series explores opportunities to improve the R&D process. This paper proposes that new technologies will enable the adoption of virtual R&D and by operating in a more connected world, industry, in collaboration with researchers, governments, healthcare payers and providers, can address the changing needs of society more effectively.

Pharma 2020: Marketing the future, the third in the series discusses the key forces reshaping the pharmaceutical marketplace, including the growing power of healthcare payers, providers and patients, and the changes required to create a marketing and sales model that is fit for the 21st century. Pharma 2020: Challeging business models, the fourth in the series it highlights the need for a more collaborative approach to the research, development and delivery of medicines. It also evaluates the advantages and disadvantages of various business models and how each stands up against the challenges facing the industry.

Pharma 2020: Challenging business models, the fourth in the Pharma 2020 series, this report explains why Pharma's fully integrated business models may not be the best option for the pharma industry in 2020 and why more creative collaboration models may be more attractive. The paper also evaluates the advantages and disadvantages of the alternative business models and how each stands up against the challenges facing the industry.

Pharma 2020: Supplying the future -- Which path will you take?
How pharma companies will have to develop different supply chain models for different product types and patient segments, learn to use their supply chains as a means of market differentiation and source of economic value, and recognise the key role information will play flowing upstream to drive the downstream flow of products and services.