Generics market to experience strong growth in 2010–2017

Generics/Research | Posted 03/02/2012 post-comment0 Post your comment

The global market for generic drugs will experience strong growth in the coming years due to patent expiries of blockbuster drugs worth US$150 billion between 2010 and 2017. Cost containment strategies being implemented by governments and healthcare service providers are also given credit for shifting sales towards cheaper generics.

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The generics market is expected to reach US$231 billion by 2017 compared to US$124 billion in 2010, with a compound annual growth rate of 9.3%. The increase is mainly attributed to patent expiries, but the effect of increasingly ageing populations and chronic diseases are also expected to contribute to growth in generics.

The analysis, which included China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Spain, UK and USA, found that generics manufacturers ‘have been proactive in forging strategic alliances’ with brand-name drugmakers for marketing rights and exclusivity to produce generics of blockbuster drugs such as Pfizer’s Lipitor (atorvastatin) [1]. However, stringent regulations and price controls imposed by governments have squeezed profit margins for generics manufacturers.

Generics giants such as Mylan, Sandoz and Teva, ‘are increasingly focused on biosimilars, as this segment provides a competitive edge and presents huge profit margins’, according to the report.

Frost & Sullivan analyst Ms Aiswariya Chidambaram said ‘the trend is shifting towards less competitive, yet commercially attractive segments such as difficult-to-produce generics, speciality generics and biosimilars.’

At the same time, there is a huge potential remaining untapped in emerging markets such as Brazil, China, India, Russia, South Korea and Turkey. 

Summing up, Ms Aiswariya Chidambaram said, ‘large multinational generics firms need to adopt a differentiated approach by opting for products with technologically challenging formulations, products which require significant regulatory support and products with limited availability of active pharmaceutical ingredients.’ 

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1.  GaBI Online - Generics and Biosimilars Initiative. Pfizer continues to fight for Lipitor []. Mol, Belgium: Pro Pharma Communications International; [cited 2012 Feb 3]. Available from:

Source: Frost & Sullivan

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