Year Established: 2004
Revenues: $40,456 (+5%)
Net Income: $2,336 (-35%)
R&D: $6,744 (+2%)
TOP SELLING DRUGS
|Aubagio||relapsing-Remitting MS (RRMS)||$2,103||8%|
|Plavix||heart attack, stroke||$1,493||-12%|
|Myozyme / Lumizyme||Pompe disease||$1,028||4%|
It was an active 2019 for Sanofi. The French pharma major reported sales of $40.5 billion, up slightly from $39.4 billion the year before.
In the beginning of June, the company named Paul Hudson as its new chief executive officer, which took effect September 1. Mr. Hudson succeeded Olivier Brandicourt and most recently served as chief executive officer of Novartis Pharmaceuticals.
Towards the end of June, Sanofi announced it was restructuring its R&D Group and would be eliminating 466 jobs in France and Germany as part of a reorganization to focus on its immuno-oncology pipeline and gene therapies.
The plan called for an exit in cardiology research in order to focus on existing assets and in-licensed clinical-phase drugs in this area. Also, the company’s diabetes research will focus on drugs that address the underlying causes of the disease but Sanofi will continue to develop its existing diabetes pipeline.
The plan also calls for an expansion of gene therapy R&D in the U.S., where it has a focused group in Massachusetts, and it will further invest in antibody engineering in Germany. The changes may also include reorganizing R&D activities among its sites in France in an effort to use its resources more efficiently.
At the end of the year, Sanofi enhanced its cancer and autoimmune pipeline when it acquired Synthorx, a CA-based immuno-oncology company, for $2.5 billion. Sanofi gains Synthorx’s lead investigational immuno-oncology candidate, THOR-707, as a single agent and in combination with another type of immunotherapy drug to address multiple tumor types. THOR-707, a variant of immune system molecule interleukin-2, leverages the immune system to destroy tumors by increasing the immune system cells that destroy damaged cells. Research to date shows the compound requires fewer doses than other interleukin-2 products, potentially reducing dangerous side effects.
The company has two other immuno-oncology candidates in the pipeline and one candidate for autoimmune disorders. Sanofi and Synthorx also aim to explore combination opportunities with Sanofi's clinical and preclinical programs.
Next-gen biotech manufacturing
Sanofi made a major splash during the year when it opened its new digital manufacturing facility in Framingham, MA, marking one of the world's first digital facilities using intensified, continuous biologics production technology.
The new first-of-its-kind facility features leading-edge technology that connects the production process with research and development, paving the way for improved commercialization of important new medicines for patients.
This facility accelerates the recent transformation of Sanofi's Industrial Affairs organization to focus on biologics-based therapies, in line with the transformation of the company's R&D pipeline. The ramping up of biopharmaceutical production capacities is a key pillar to achieving Sanofi's refocused efforts.
The facility's advanced paperless and data-driven manufacturing technologies is expected to enable Sanofi to achieve higher levels of productivity, agility, and flexibility, reducing the time it takes for products to move from the development labs to the manufacturing plant.
The digital transformation of Sanofi's manufacturing network is a key element of the company's goal to leverage better use of data to optimize the company's manufacturing processes, increasing efficiencies, improving the agility needed to respond to fast changing patient needs, and speeding up the commercialization of new medicines emerging from the R&D pipeline.
Framingham is the latest biologics manufacturing facility amongst a number of pilots, which are being accelerated across the Sanofi network. The innovations established at this facility are being deployed and standardized across the company. Framingham is the first "digitally born" facility while similar digital transformations are introduced in other legacy plants. Beyond Framingham, Sanofi intends to move forward with digital transformation initiatives in Toronto (Canada), Suzano (Brazil), Waterford (Ireland), Sisteron (France), and Geel (Belgium).
The Framingham digital biomanufacturing facility is part of Sanofi's integrated, cross-functional biologics hub in Framingham. A critical global hub for more than 30 years, the campus offers co-location of all the infrastructure and activities required to speed the delivery of innovative new therapies to patients, from early stage research and process development through clinical and commercial manufacturing, including the key enabling functions of quality control and compliance, regulatory, engineering, supply chain, and learning and development.
The co-location of these critical functions allows for seamless, end-to-end product and process design and manufacturing and provides leading-edge development opportunities for our employees' competencies evolution.
Transforming healthcare with digital innovation
During the year, Sanofi teamed up with Google to develop the Innovation Lab—a virtual healthcare environment that aims to radically transform how future medicines and health services are delivered to patients.
The Innovation Lab will develop both scientific and commercial solutions by tapping into the power of emerging data technologies. The collaboration aims to change how Sanofi develops new treatments and will focus on three key objectives: to better understand patients and diseases, to increase Sanofi’s operational efficiency, and to improve the experience of Sanofi’s patients and customers.
Sanofi and Google will leverage deep analytics across data sets to better understand key diseases and extract related patient insights. This will enable Sanofi to research and develop more personalized approaches to treatment and identify accompanying technologies to improve health outcomes. The companies will apply technology and analytics on Sanofi’s large real-world database to better understand what treatments work for patients. This aims to result in an improved ability to offer personalized treatment advice, thus optimizing patient care and reducing healthcare costs.