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Roche Dominates the European Union Rankings in Oncology/Hematology Study Commissioned by Market Strategies

  • Roche places first in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK and #1 overall in the EU.
  • Novartis is a strong second in each of these countries as well as #2 overall.
  • Amgen, Sanofi-Aventis, and Pfizer finish in the top five in the EU.
  • Celgene is a strong #6 and finishes in the top five in France, Italy and Spain.
  • AstraZeneca and Janssen-Cilag finish behind Celgene but AstraZeneca finishes 4th in the UK.

Market Strategies International, a full-service custom and syndicated research and strategic consulting firm, has released its first European Oncology/Hematology study which covers France, Germany, Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom.

The syndicated study identifies which companies have the best image among 563 European oncologists and hematologists, who evaluated 30 sales force, corporate equity and research and development attributes. These were used to determine which measures drive a pharmaceutical/biopharmaceutical company's image and performance.

"Our MSImage studies help companies better understand their strengths and weaknesses among their key stakeholders, while also showing how a company's focus can be redirected toward those key performance measures that drive image," says Peter Carlin, senior vice president and head of Market Strategies' Global Healthcare Research Division. "Ultimately that influences the behavior of their most important customers.

Market Strategies' studies indicate that companies evaluated by respondents as the best performers can drive those "engagement" behaviors that are most important in an environment where share of voice is becoming increasingly competitive Carlin says. "We believe that there is a strong correlation between a high image and such 'behaviors' as a physician's likelihood to recommend products to colleagues, whether to try new products and if they are willing to make additional time for sales reps," he added.

It is clear that clients are using Market Strategies' research to implement strategic changes in their marketing approach that achieve actionable results Carlin says. Senior executives are increasingly interested to hear how their stakeholders evaluated their company and more importantly, how they can improve their performance the following year.

"Like our other MSImage studies, the European study presents a company's performance on each attribute. We also consult directly with companies to help them understand how they performed against their key competitors," Carlin says.

While Roche is clearly the leader among European oncologists and hematologists, Novartis Oncology represents the major challenger to Roche. Roche's lead is significant across all countries. In Spain, Italy and Germany, Roche's statistical lead over Novartis on virtually all key performance measures is significant.

In many respects Roche's lead mirrors the results that Genentech previously generated in the U.S. but Novartis has narrowed that lead domestically. Expectations are that it will narrow in Europe again in 2009 says Ellen Gordon, Ph.D., Research Director for these studies.

The most notable surprises were Celgene's performance, which vaulted that company into the top five in several countries; and Amgen, which finished a strong third in the EU rankings. "These results suggest that ESA issues have not had the same impact in Europe? as they have induced in the United States," Gordon says.

Sanofi-Aventis and Pfizer also finished in the top five in overall EU image with physicians giving Pfizer high ratings on research and development measures while highly rating Sanofi-Aventis' performance on the attributes comprising their commitment to oncology and to physicians.

"Oncologists' and hematologists' ratings on Pfizer suggest that they are aware of Pfizer's strong pipeline while recognizing Sanofi-Aventis' commitment to services that benefit physicians and their practices," said Ruchika Kapur, Lead Analyst for the MSImage franchise. Unlike in the United States where sales force measures dominate the key drivers, European physicians, who tend to see fewer sales reps, view new products and providing information as critical to a company's performance Kapur added.

"Companies in both Europe and the United States are recommended to begin thinking about the impact of a physician's total customer experience with their company rather than focusing simply on their sales reps' overall effectiveness says Raymond Reno, Ph.D., Vice President of Market Strategies' Marketing Sciences Group. That's because physician experience is being impacted by a number of "touch points" beyond just their core contact relationships and product-related therapeutic experience he added.

"Touch points such as their experiences with your R&D efforts, your communication initiatives, your commitment to patient access and your organizational structure all influence your customer's experience with your company," Reno says.

Market Strategies' 2008 MSImage European Oncology and Hematology Study was released to its subscribers on July 23, 2008. The questionnaire was fielded via the Internet among 563 physicians in June. Physicians were recruited from an internationally-based representative e-research panel.

For more information on this study, contact:

Katy Palmer, Ph.D.
Senior Vice President, Healthcare Division
734.542.7746

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