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Industry Analysis Case Study

Case Title:

Merck: A Future Laggard in the Global Pharmaceutical Industry?

Publication Year : 2005

Authors: Anindya Roy, Sumit Kumar Chaudhuri

Industry: Health Care


Case Code: INA0030

Teaching Note: Not Available

Structured Assignment: Not Available

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Merck, voted as America's most admired company by Fortune for seven consecutive years (between 1986 and 1993), was facing a host of problems by 2003. Known for its pioneering research in the pharmaceutical industry in the past, Merck had introduced only six drugs between 2001 and 2003. The company's sales have also declined taking it to number three position in the global pharmaceutical industry. Its net income fell for two consecutive years 2002 and 2003 and it had to lay off 4,400 employees in 2003, the biggest ever in its 117 year history.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To discuss the reasons behind Merck's decline
  • To discuss how competitive Merck can be in future.

Keywords : Blockbuster drugs; 'Me-too' drugs; Contract research organisations; Prescription benefits management; Managing in Troubled Times Case Study; In-house research; Drug development and clinical trials; Generic manufacturers

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