Shaping the future of precision medicine

This PwC report on the precision medicine industry features the findings of a Taiwan survey of health industry executives and professionals, and analyses the latest global trends and developments.

Analysing Taiwan’s precision medicine industry

A long period of government and private investment in Taiwan has produced an ecosystem that spans the entire precision medicine value chain, from research, testing and diagnostics to medical treatment. The findings of our PwC survey revealed four different characteristics of the precision medicine industry in Taiwan.

R&D-based startups lead the way

Fifty-percent of surveyed companies involved in precision medicine are startups with capital of less than NT$500m (US$16m). One-third of the companies were only incorporated within the past 5 years. These startups are R&D-based with over 30% of their annual budget spent on product development.

Primary focus on molecular testing and diagnostics

Eighty-two percent of surveyed companies involved in precision medicine focus on molecular testing and diagnostics (IVDs and laboratory testing), followed by bioinformatics software and analytics (74%), and DNA sequencing instrument (70%). They expect to remain focused in these areas in the next 5-10 years.

High overseas market penetration, mainly in China

Seventy-one percent of surveyed companies involved in precision medicine have marketed their products or services overseas. Among them, 85% consider China to have the largest market potential, followed by the United States (50%) and Southeast Asia (38%). However, different regulatory approval processes, local competition, and lack of local partners are the main barriers to operational success overseas.

Digital technology is the cure

Eighty six percent of survey respondents consider Taiwan’s strengths in information communication technology to be basis for the future successful development of a precision medicine ecosystem.

Go-to market lessons from global precision medicine players

Our PwC analysis identified four typical business models that international precision medicine developers tend to adopt in order to gain market traction in an ever-changing healthcare environment.

  • Asset builder. Develop a lead biomedical compound for a specific disease. Companies adopting this model typically out-license their products and collaborate with big pharma to maximize market access.
  • Service integrator. Combine diagnostic and therapeutic solutions to provide personalized care for a specific disease.
  • Market explorer. Leverage a lead biomedical compound for tapping into a wide range of diseases.
  • Pharma versatility. Provide several new drugs and diagnostic solutions to treat a wide range of diseases. Companies adopting this model constantly review their cost structures and find synergies between different product lines to boost profitability.

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