Once again we find ourselves wrapping up our 2017 goals and  and tallying the year’s performance. Simultaneously, we are filled with excitement looking forward to the New Year and to the promises it will bring to the pharmaceutical industry and the CRO community. According to Reuters, 2017 was one of the most successful in terms of bringing new drugs to the market in both the U.S. and EU at 46 and 92 respectively. This is almost double the rate in the U.S. over 2016. However, we also found out those pharmaceutical companies have seen a lower return on R&D over previous years. While this ROI can fluctuate due to commercial cycles and timing, the metrics still indicate a tremendous amount of pressure for pharmaceutical companies to become more effective in building, managing and executing strategy when it comes to their pipelines. Drugs are becoming more complex and the “me too” market is not as enticing as it once was before the playing field became more and more crowded. The generics industry is still a major business challenge for the innovators and as a result we have seen a shift in how the industry approaches its development with a significant focus on biologics filling the pipelines. The challenges are much the same going into 2018, but as with all businesses the bar continues to rise on expected performance from the board room as well as the regulators.

CRO’s, in broad terms, have been evolving to meet the needs of industry and 2017 was a shining example of the merger and acquisition trend happening. As more and more service providers are being consolidated into the larger strategic organizations, the once common, small, but very capable service providers are now becoming less common. One might say, based on the industry trends, these organizations are tactically at a disadvantage to provide services to the industry. However, history has a way of repeating itself and time tends to cloud the memory.  The big, consolidated organizations are becoming the less flexible organizations that drove a large part of the reason why outsourcing became more of the answer to a complex industry problem. It will certainly be interesting to see if this mega CRO strategy creates value for the industry as well as the CRO itself.

As business plans roll out and goals are set, 2018 will soon be in the history books as well. As a niche provider of bioanalytical services to the industry for all drug entities, KCAS will be expanding its ability in 2018 to serve our customers with investments in our people, equipment and facilities to continue to advance the mission of our company which is essentially to support our clients to develop drugs to make the world a better place. Our New Year’s resolution is to continually improve on providing our services and to advance the laboratories to serve your needs when it comes to reliable and competent data for your development programs. We will be announcing several important new developments in 2018 and invite you to follow KCAS through this wonderful evolution as a committed and focused provider of bioanalytical and biomarker services. Here’s to a very safe and prosperous 2018!