Spring 2009 MBA Course

B8799-017: Strategy and Competition in Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology

MW - A Term, 12:30PM to 02:00PM

Location: URI 332

Instructor: Cliff Cramer; Robert Essner

Download Syllabus

View textbook info

View course evaluation

This course examines the strategic, technological, competitive, organizational, and political challenges impacting the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry. Its perspective is global, including developed markets (U.S., EU, Japan) and emerging markets. Critical issues to be examined include:
•    Strategies and process of discovering, developing, and the  approval of new drugs and biologics;
•    Impact of government oversight and regulation;
•    Patents on pharmaceuticals and biologics;
•    Franchise/ R&D portfolio management;
•    Drug pricing and third-party reimbursement;
•    Pharmaceutical supply chain; design of prescription drug plans; PBMs/contracting;
•    Rx product life cycle management;
•    Int’l/ emerging markets – business strategies and growth prospects;
•    Vaccines – development, regulatory, pricing, distribution;
•    Health policy matters impacting this sector;
•    M&A in the biopharmaceutical sector.

The course is cross-functional in its approach, focuses on “real-world” problems currently facing senior managers in this sector, and identifies emerging trends that will materially impact future performance of “Big Pharma” companies, as well as “small-cap” specialty pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms. This course will be useful for students interested in careers in pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, and health services, as well as management consulting, investment banking, equity research, venture capital, private equity, insurance, and investment management given the large and growing healthcare/ pharmaceutical practices of such firms. Some understanding and prior experience in the healthcare/pharma industry will be highly useful.
Evaluation is 25% class participation, 25% mid-term assignment (questions or case study), and 50% final paper (questions or case study).

Cliff Cramer

DirectorProfessor Cramer spent more than 25 years in the healthcare, pharmaceutical, and financial services sectors. He was Managing Director at Merrill Lynch in the Global Healthcare Investment Banking Group, and Managing Director at JPMorgan in the Corporate Finance Group providing M&A services and financing to global healthcare enterprises. Earlier, Prof. Cramer was Vice President, Corporate Planning & Development for Merck & Co., Inc. with worldwide responsibilities for...

View full profile

Robert Essner

Executive-in-ResidenceRobert Essner is the retired chairman and CEO of Wyeth, which was one of the world's leading research-based pharmaceutical companies. He led the transformation of Wyeth into a science-based industry leader with strong positions in drugs, biotechnology, vaccines, nonprescription products and animal health. During his more than 30 years in the industry, Mr. Essner served as chairman of both U.S. and global pharmaceutical organizations. He...

View full profile

Personal Website