Straddling a Murky Line Between Drugs and Less-Regulated Supplements Illustrates Next Chapter of AstraZeneca’s Aggressive Chinese Penetration Strategy

Jun 16, 2019 | China, China Drug Development, Herbal Treatment, Supplements

China Healthcare

AstraZeneca Plc is has announced an incredibly risky—and expensive—early stage oncology strategy to differentiate in major markets such as the U.S. and Europe. However, in China the British Pharma is betting on a traditional heart remedy that be purchased for $2.50 a pack, reports Bloomberg.

AstraZeneca has partnered with Shandong-based Luye Pharma Group Ltd., a remedy maker, to become the first multinational pharma with exclusive promotion rights for a Chinese drug.

How did AstraZeneca pull this deal off? Possibly, as Bloomberg notes, by its willingness to straddle the murky line between drugs and less -regulated supplements illustrates how committed the Anglo-Swedish corporation is to differentiate itself in the Chinese market.

CEO Pascal Soriot initiated a Chinese strategy in 2012 and it is starting to pay off.  Sales there grew last quarter surged 21% beating those in all other regions. Its Xuezhikang deal represents a new phase as the they look at China as a new source of treatments, not just as a booming market.


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