The global clinical trial supplies (CTS) market includes services like packaging and labeling services, clinical supplies logistics & distribution, comparator sourcing, and clinical supplies management. The R&D expenditure by large pharma companies totaled a record $133 billion in 2021, an increase of 44% since 2016. With the rising R&D spending and the increasing complexity of clinical trials, Pharma/Biotech is looking to outsource more non-core activities related to clinical trials. Big Pharma is usually more reluctant to outsource than biotech, which is highly reliant on external partners for clinical development activities.
Increased Focus on Biologics which require Specialized Logistics Capabilities
The global biologics market which is growing at ~15% far exceeds the overall pharmaceutical market growth. Biologics drugs require specialized logistics, distribution, storage, and monitoring capabilities as drugs are temperature sensitive. This further provides growth opportunities for CTS providers with proven expertise and capabilities in handling biologics.
Growth in Clinical Trials Conducted
In 2021, new clinical trials started, across Phase I/II/III, representing a 21% increase over the previous year. Overall, the number of new clinical trials started grew by 7.1% between 2016 and 21. The growth in the clinical trials conducted would spur the demand for the clinical trial supply services like comparator sourcing, clinical logistics and supplies management.
Oncology â€“ High Growth Therapeutic Area for CTS
In terms of therapeutic use, oncology is the leading and fastest-growing segment. This is mainly attributed to the presence of a huge R&D pipeline of oncology drugs. Moreover, the majority of oncology drugs require temperature-sensitive distribution, which is expected to fuel the demand for cold chain distribution.
Decentralized Trials leading to an Increased Demand for Clinical Trial Supplies Market
Covid-19 has provided an impetus to clinical trials being conducted in a decentralized manner. Virtual trials have become more important than ever post-pandemic. There were hardly any M&As related to virtual trials taking place before the pandemic, but the market observed ~10 M&A deals in 2020. The growing trend toward decentralized trials and the need for direct-from-patient and direct-to-patient logistics and distribution of samples/drugs/monitoring equipment make the role of CTS providers more critical in ensuring smooth & efficient progress of clinical studies.
Global Footprint and Coverage, a Key Differentiator
As companies face challenges in the recruitment of patients, clinical trials are increasingly conducted across more regions and sites. CTS providers with a global footprint and/or ability to service across North America/Europe and increasingly Asia/LATAM as well, are in great demand.
Competitive Landscape Analysis: Global Clinical Trial Supplies Market
The global clinical trial supplies market is highly fragmented with the presence of large, integrated CDMOs as well as smaller players. CROs are also looking to expand their service scope to clinical trial manufacturing and also clinical trial supplies distribution & logistics as a vertical integration strategy.
Some of the key/promising players operating in the clinical trial supplies market are Thermo Fisher Scientific, Catalent, Parexel, Almac Group, Clinigen, Marken (UPS), Piramal, UDG Healthcare, Klifo, Capsugel (Lonza), Recipharm, N-SIDE, Ancillare, and Biocair.
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