Boston Scientific vs Johnson & Johnson: Battle for the Stent Market


Code : COM0033

Year :

Industry : Health Care

Region : USA

Teaching Note:Available

Structured Assignment :Available

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Abstract: First-mover advantage in a virgin market is crucial for a pharmaceutical company as it invests billions of dollars on research. Introducing a new product first would result in a quicker financial break-even and even profit for the company. Stent, a medical device that obviated open-heart surgeries, turned out to be one of the hottest products for the pharma and medical device companies in the US.

Though Johnson & Johnson pioneered the stent market and dominated it, the company lost its lead to other players such as Guidant, Medtronic and Boston Scientific. Just when the industry was on the point of oblivion, Johnson & Johnson came back with 'cypher' in 2003 - a drug-coated stent.

It instantly became a leader, surpassing Boston Scientific and other players. In record time, Boston Scientific responded with its own drug-coated stent, 'taxus' in March 2004 and displaced Johnson & Johnson from its leading position.

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Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To discuss the market forces that operate in the stent market
  • To discuss the battle for dominance between Boston Scientific and Johnson & Johnson and the factors that shape the competitive positions of the incumbent companies
  • To discuss the critical factors that help companies to wade through a volatile industry
  • To discuss the importance of first-mover advantage in the pharmaceutical industry.

    Keywords : Coronary stent; Boston Scientific; Johnson & Johnson; Palmaz-Schatz stent; Competitive Strategies Case Study; Drug coated stents; Bare metal stents; The NIR stent; The cypher launch; The taxus launch; Medinol's Kobi Richter; Guidant; Medtronic; Role of Federal Drug Administration (FDA); Clandestine facility; Patent infringements and lawsuits

    Contents :
    Circa 1985
    Boston Scientific's Nir
    The Cypher Launch

    Case Introduction >>

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