The worldwide pharmaceutical market is projected to grow from approximately $1.1 trillion in 2016 to $1.5 trillion in 2021, representing a compound annual growth rate of 6.4%. The ten major developed markets are expected to cover 67% of global spending by 2021, which is 1% less than their share in 2016. Growth will be driven by global demographic and economic trends, including a rapidly aging global population and an associated rise in chronic diseases; increased urbanization; higher disposable income; greater government expenditure on healthcare; and growing demand for more effective treatments.
Most mid-size pharma companies are focusing heavily on developing a portfolio of generic products covering a variety of therapy areas and geographies. Additionally, the top mid-size companies are involved in the end-to-end development of innovative products, although in these cases their focus is limited to specific therapy areas. A few mid-size companies diverge from the typical trends and are particularly focused on rare diseases, such as the Alexion Pharmaceuticals. In these ways mid-size companies can be seen to be different to large pharma companies, which almost all focus on end-to-end product development covering a variety of therapy areas and geographies. Large pharma companies have sufficient investment capability and human resources to support a wider variety of R&D activities than mid-size pharma.