Business Development: Forecasting Uptake of Novel Agents

Predicting demand for a Phase II HCV drug to defend valuation in partnering negotiations

Business Challenge

Our client was a small- to mid-size biotechnology firm developing, among other things, a Phase II drug for use in Hepatitis C. The client had previously hired a pharma-focused consulting firm to develop and populate a patient flow, forecasting, and valuation model for use in negotiation with potential suitors—but was dissatisfied with the amount and depth of research fueling the model. Our client was anticipating a contentious round of negotiations and desired to make the strongest case possible.

MedPanel Approach

We conducted online discussions with forty KOLs and community practitioners across the U.S. and EU to create an up-to-date picture of the current practice of medicine in Hepatitis C. In this work we used KOLs to verify a six-stage inflection-point based future paradigm for the treatment of HCV which served as a foundation of the subsequent forecast. We then surveyed over 300 physician treaters of HCV in the U.S. and EU to quantify current practice and predict future treatment in each of the carefully described future scenarios. Additionally, we assessed demand elasticity to novel HCV therapies in the context of variations in efficacy, duration of therapy, and severity of side effects.

Results & Impact

Armed with our research, our client confidently entered negotiations with a top global pharmaceutical company. The other company had hired a prestige management consulting firm to build their valuation case. However, MedPanel's work (with 10-fold more and highly targeted data from practitioners and KOLs in both the U.S. and EU) served our client very well. MedPanel was called into portions of the negotiation to defend the work and, in the end, the negotiations went favorably for our client. The CFO described our work as: "an absolute home run for us."