Revenue from the European biosimilars market will reach nearly $4 billion by 2017, analysts have predicted.
The market is estimated to grow at an annual rate of 56.7% in the next five years with the expirations of key patents and intellectual property providing opportunities for manufacturers.
Srinivas Sashidhar, Research Analyst at Frost & Sullivan, said upcoming opportunities will see various biosimilars enter the market and increase industry competition.
Frost & Sullivan estimates that the European biosimilars market earned revenue of around $172 million in 2010. It recognises that the industry is at a “nascent stage”, but will experience significant growth within the next decade.
But while the market offers lucrative growth prospects, smaller firms may struggle with the sizeable investments needed to exploit these opportunities.
Complex production processes, expensive biological and chemical materials and rigorous clinical trials will require significant investment and may require small and medium sized firms to merge or partner with pharmaceutical companies.
“Price reduction strategies will ensure increased adoption among physicians and patients alike, spurring market advancement,” said Srinivas Sashidhar.
“The need for considerable financial outlays will hinder the entry of small biotech firms in particular. On the other hand, specialty pharmaceutical companies with biotech expertise and financial capabilities are well positioned to venture into the biosimilars market.”
However, despite the expected growth, Frost & Sullivan warn there are still persistent uncertainties and risks for biosimilars manufacturers. Companies will need to have strong integrated R&D, production and sales and marketing divisions to ensure market access and success. Effective sales communication coupled with continuous promotional activities and constant interaction will also be key to realising potential growth, Srinivas Sashidhar added.