Pharma R&D return on investment at highest level in 8 years

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The return on investment for pharmaceutical research and development has risen to its highest level since 2014, according to Deloitte's 12th annual pharmaceutical innovation report.

Deloitte's analysis focused on projected returns from the late-stage pipelines of the 12 largest drugmakers by 2009 research and development spending, according to a Jan. 12 news release. Here are four key findings from the report:

  1. In 2021, return on investment for pharmaceutical research and development rose to 7 percent, from 2.7 percent in 2020. This marks the largest annual increase since Deloitte began releasing its report in 2010.

  2. The average cost of developing a new drug dropped to $2 billion in 2021, down from $2.4 billion in 2020.

  3. The estimate for peak sales per asset rose to $521 million in 2021, up from $422 million in 2020.

  4. The average cycle time for developing a new drug decreased for the first time since 2016. The average cycle time was 6.9 years in 2021, down from 7.14 years in 2020.

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