Hengrui Pharmaceuticals may be a new kid on the global block, but as the largest pharma company in China, it’s also making an impression on the international stage by partnering with Elevar to market its so-called “liver cancer cocktail” and by creating subsidiary Luzsana Biotechnology to commercialize their extensive drug pipeline from China.
The foundation for these developments is a booming biotech industry in China, which is also attracting attention and investment from foreign drugmakers. AstraZeneca, Roche, and Pfizer – long-term leaders in the market – have been making deals in search of innovative drugs and are increasingly entrusting the commercialization of some products in China to domestic firms.
China biotech still dominated by international corporations
In our research for the 2024 China Company Transformation Indicator (CCTI) we investigated the top pharmaceutical companies in China. As expected, half of these are foreign multinational corporations (MNCs), but we also saw a dozen innovative national pharmaceutical and biotech companies entering the ranks as well as six traditional Chinese medicine makers. In our study (our methodology) we look at 44 variables across eight factors, ranking from investors’ expectations of future growth and pharmaceutical pipeline factors to early innovation results in the Chinese market and business robustness.
It’s no surprise that the top 10 pharmaceutical companies in China are all foreign MNCs except Hengrui, with Pfizer, Roche, and AstraZeneca leading the pack. Compared to the global rankings by the Future Readiness Research Center at IMD, the same three top performers are also in the global top five.