Pfizer shifts focus to rural china

May 30, 2019

Pfizer is shifting its attention to remoter regions of China in an effort to offset the impact of government price-cutting policies on sales of its aging blockbusters.

China's generic-drug purchasing program for major cities forces companies to bid for contracts to sell generic versions of branded drugs that have lost patent protection, driving down prices by as much as 90 percent.

Public hospitals in 11 Chinese cities are switching from Pfizer’s products to locally produced alternatives, after Pfizer lost out to Chinese manufacturers for contracts to supply the participating cities with Lipitor and Norvasc, a treatment for high blood pressure.

Pfizer, the top foreign pharma group by revenue in China, responded by hiring 600 new sales staff this year to try to increase sales in smaller cities and rural areas, where the drugmaker feels there are unmet needs.

Read the Bloomberg coverage.

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