Sleepy Industries are Not Immune to the Shake Up of Digital Transformation

Posted by Robert Flynn + Malini Solanki on Jun 28, 2018 1:27:41 PM

It’s one thing to start a business or launch a product, another to earn market share and yet another to retain it. All three stages of operating a successful business require an in-depth understanding of the external marketplace and consumer trends, information that impacts a business’s ability to differentiate. Without this understanding the organization is at risk for the unexpected.

Well known examples of companies with a firm grasp on competitive strategy include the big five: Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google and Microsoft. Each company undoubtedly has either outpaced legacy brands (Barnes and Noble, Macy’s, Best Buy to name a few) or acquired their competitors. By leveraging a superior understanding of the external environment these companies are experts at anticipating customer needs and creating disruptive platforms that businesses and consumers alike can’t survive without.

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Topics: Market Analysis, Healthcare, Competitive Strategy, Disruption, Amazon, Consumer Insights, Digital Transformation

Unraveling Healthcare Industry Dynamics: M+A, Shifting Risk and the Data Revolution

Posted by Robert Flynn on Jun 26, 2018 3:58:32 PM

There is no denying that change is the single most prominent theme in healthcare today. Most people point to change imposed by the government including concepts to constrain pharmaceutical drug prices and morph or repeal the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. However, most of the change is being driven by health players themselves – payers, providers, technologists, pharmaceutical manufacturers, and, to an increasing extent, consumers.

While it’s impossible to predict the final configuration, it is feasible to capture the primary factors involved in or driving the transformation. Reviewing our recent engagements with major corporations across the healthcare industry, speaking with executives at conferences such as the Blue Cross Blue Shield Summit, the HealthSmart IT event, and several pharmaceutical tradeshows, we’ve identified some of the top issues that are driving healthcare change. Knowing these elements and their nuances is critical for the executive and policy maker , who want to stay ahead, or drive change themselves.

To label these as definitive would deny the very essence of the transformation afoot. Yet, these are, as of now, critical issues affecting the industry.

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Topics: Healthcare, Competitive Strategy, technology, Disruption

There’s No Monster Under the Bed: Why Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, JP Morgan Entity Won’t Upend the Healthcare Industry

Posted by Robert Flynn on Jun 25, 2018 3:47:47 PM

Amazon, among a few other enterprise giants, has garnered a reputation for disrupting every industry it’s entered. Its actions and intentions around the health industry have therefore created some buzz, particularly considering the unexpected coalition of Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JP Morgan. Many are wondering if Amazon is going to displace healthcare organizations, starting with payers. With its scale, extensive data about consumer purchases and behavior, and technological prowess, will it create a new model for the provision of care? What will the impact be?

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Topics: Healthcare, Disruption, Amazon

The Power—or Threat—of Vertical Integration in Healthcare

Posted by Jacob Golbitz on Apr 10, 2018 5:24:25 PM

How CVS Health’s Performance Based Pharmacy Network Demonstrates its Competitive Strategy

In March 2018, CVS Health has introduced a ‘performance based pharmacy network,’ comprised of 30,000 CVS and Walgreens and approximately 10,000 other retail pharmacies nationwide. Mirroring the value-based model to incentivize pharmacies to help patients adhere to prescription regimens, the new network has the potential to control costs and improve the quality of care through increased access and convenience. In addition to addressing some of healthcare’s most pressing challenges, CVS Heath’s activities highlight how vertical integration is securing its market position and demonstrates how this strategy could be threatening to payers.

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Topics: New Market Entry, Healthcare, Merger and Acquisition, Insurers

How CVS Health’s Performance-Based Pharmacy is Positioned to Improve Cost and Quality across the Healthcare Continuum

Posted by Jacob Golbitz on Apr 6, 2018 12:23:26 PM

CVS Health issued a press release in October 2017 announcing the launch of the nation’s first “performance-based pharmacy network” in March 2018. The network will comprise approximately 30,000 retail pharmacies that currently work with Caremark, CVS Health’s Pharmacy Benefits Manager (PBM). Most of these stores will be CVS or Walgreens locations, but the network will also include up to 10,000 independently owned pharmacies.

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Topics: New Market Entry, Healthcare, Competitive Strategy, Diversification, Insurers

How Distributors Can Navigate the Fragmentation of Vaccine Administration

Posted by Laura Ruth on Apr 3, 2018 9:15:08 AM

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Topics: Market Analysis, New Market Entry, Healthcare, Life Sciences, Competitive Strategy, new entrants

Walmart’s Potential Acquisition of Humana: Competitive Strategy Implications for the U.S. Healthcare Industry

Posted by Ken Sawka on Mar 30, 2018 1:28:34 PM


I loathe the pervasive, trite metaphor that compares competitive strategy to the game of chess.  However, recent reports that Walmart is in discussions to acquire health insurer Humana can only be explained as a game of three-dimensional chess.  Should this deal go through – and, to be sure, it is a long way from happening – it satisfies three competitive strategy objectives for Walmart: responding to CVS Health, blocking Amazon and improving access to new customer segments.

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Topics: Competitive Intelligence, Healthcare, Merger and Acquisition, Competitive Strategy, Amazon

An Uphill Battle for Biosimilar Adoption in the U.S.

Posted by Varun Naik on Feb 26, 2018 6:00:23 PM

Biosimilars were expected to spark competition and lower prices for branded biologics, but this potential has still been unfulfilled. The U.S. health industry has been relatively slow to adopt biosimilars due to a combination of complex market access tactics employed by branded biologics manufacturers, on-going patent litigation, lack of interchangeability, and a general lack of awareness and acceptance of biosimilars. To date, the FDA has approved nine biosimilars; however, only three biosimilars have launched. The current biosimilars landscape is in stark contrast to the generics market where payers and pharmacy benefit managers promote these cheaper alternatives to reduce healthcare costs.

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Topics: Market Analysis, Pharma, Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals

Managing Regulatory and Political Risk

Posted by Robert Flynn on Nov 21, 2017 3:38:26 PM

In our paper The Global Economy’s New Frontiers, my colleague Nathaniel Emmons and I argue that when investing in emerging economies, companies can realize high returns but only if the risks are successfully managed. Transnational mining companies operating in Zimbabwe, for instance, are in crisis management mode following this month’s coup, impeachment of President Mugabe, and transfer of power to yet another strong-man. Not an unanticipated series of events given the political instability experienced in recent years, and something that needs intense effort to navigate.

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Topics: Consumer Goods, Healthcare, Merger and Acquisition, Competitive Strategy, Early Warning

What’s Hindering the Broad Adoption of Value-Based Care?

Posted by Jacob Golbitz on Nov 21, 2017 12:51:51 PM

The public conversation about health care in this country may be driven by politics -- something we were reminded of last week when the Trump administration appeared to waffle on its latest attempt to undo the ACA. Beyond the political conversation, however, we find that professionals in payer and provider organizations are more focused on deeper layers of policy, technology, access to care and reimbursement. Those on the business end of the discussion are addressing key trends that are likely to continue regardless of the political discourse, whatever the current political climate.

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Topics: Healthcare

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