Novo Nordisk, Sanofi, and Eli Lilly have consistently been the leading providers of insulin across the world. They also hold a strong ground in the China insulin market owing to greater market penetration and a higher brand value. In 2012, these three leading players held a giant collective share of 95.8% in value from a global perspective, marking an extremely consolidated market. The three players also hold a similarly strong presence in China along with a few other regionally prominent names, including Tonghua and Shanghai Fosun.
According to Transparency Market Research, the competitive rivalry in the global insulin market has been very high over the recent past and is expected to remain high till 2019. The market is known to be highly oligopolistic with intense rivalry between the top names. Rivalries are expected to get even more intense over the coming years through the expected launch of improved drugs pertaining to the enhanced control of a patient’s glycemic index.
The global market for insulin is expected to expand at a CAGR of 6.1% from 2013 to 2019, in terms of revenue. This revenue is expected to reach US$26.72 bn by the end of 2016 and US$32.24 bn by the end of 2019. The China market for insulin is expected to expand at a soaring CAGR of 23.6% within the forecast period from 2013 to 2019, in terms of revenue. This revenue is expected to reach US$3.55 bn by the end of 2016 and US$6.51 bn by the end of 2019.
Long-acting Insulin Popular Globally, Expected to Take Stronger Hold in China
Long-acting insulin has been the leading mode of action in the global insulin market for quite a while. By the end of 2019, this segment is expected to reach US$17.36 bn after being projected at a prime CAGR of 8.7% from 2013 to 2018. The consumers in China have so far shown a higher preference to premixed insulin, a segment that is expected to gain US$3.35 bn by 2019. However, China is showing a very high CAGR for long-acting insulin, a meteoric 31.5% from 2013 to 2019.
Human insulin has so far been the leading source-based segment in the global insulin market. It is expected to reach US$2.45 bn by the end of 2019. However, recent developments in modern insulin sources have allowed this segment to gain the lead in terms of growth rate. Modern insulin is expected to expand at a bold CAGR of 29.8% from 2013 to 2019, fueled by consistent advancements and growing awareness levels.
Low Regulatory Pressure Allows for Higher Insulin Price Caps
“An advantage that lies in the hands of players in the global insulin market is the lower rate of regulatory control over them in all regions. The number of patent expirations are increasing in a year-on-year manner, which is giving way to the rise of generics and a consequently higher spending on drugs. Meanwhile, the top players will be able to increase the prices of their premium insulin products to offset the loss of sales,” states a TMR analyst.
The domestic insulin companies in the global insulin market have to stay close to lower margins to keep afloat in the oligopolistic market, while the top players can call the shots on the price caps for their premium drugs. From a player’s perspective, this is a high level of freedom that allows them to maintain positive revenues despite the incoming wave of generics.
Insulin Therapy in Low Preference as Type 2 Patients Stick to GLP-1 and SGLT2
One of the prime restraints that a lot of players in the global insulin market are currently facing is the growing preference of the new class therapeutic agents aimed at type 2 diabetes patients. GLP-1 agonists and SGLT2 inhibitors are used to reduce the glucose levels in the body, by either promoting the urinary excretion of glucose, inhibiting the reabsorption of glucose, or to improve peripheral glucose absorption. These new class therapeutic drugs are much successful than their predecessors, as the previous drugs would eventually fail and patients would be switched to insulin therapy. The growing number of type 2 diabetes patients staying on drug therapy to maintain glucose levels would, therefore, restrict the number of patients opting for insulin therapy.
“Players in the global insulin market can look forward to a greater consumer base through the evolution of combination products. These can help a player gain better product differentiation and help patients combat not just diabetes but also the health complications created because of it,” the analyst adds.
The information presented in this review is based on a Transparency Market Research report, titled, “Global and China Insulin Market - Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast (Value and Volume) 2013 - 2019.”
Key segments of the Global and China Insulin Market
Global and China Insulin Market, by Mode of Action
- Rapid-acting Insulin
- Short-acting Insulin
- Intermediate-acting Insulin
- Long-acting Insulin
- Premixed Insulin
Global and China Insulin Market, by Source
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