Can Denmark’s leading pharmaceutical company maintain its lead?

For a brief period, Novo Nordisk, a Danish pharmaceutical business, emerged as the most valuable company in Europe towards the end of the previous year. Though not very well-known outside of the business community, Novo Nordisk was not previously seen as a major force in the pharmaceutical sector, much less a titan of the European stock market. However, because it had found the Holy Grail of all medications, it shot to the top of the league table and was valued at $428 billion (£342 billion). One that, throughout the Western World and beyond, millions of people want and need.

Wegovy’s active ingredient was created to treat type 2 diabetes, but it was discovered that it would virtually certainly cause weight loss as a side effect. Similar to how Viagra was first intended to treat high blood pressure, Wegovy’s unintended but well-known adverse effects have turned it into a necessity medication. It is coming to an open door, as Goldman Sachs study indicates that the market for anti-obesity medications will be valued at around $6 billion this year. However, it might increase to $100 billion—more than 16 times—by 2030.

It sounds almost too wonderful to be true, but what are the possibilities and long-term implications for a pharmaceutical business that finds a sure thing that works? Is it more like a poisoned chalice or is it truly the Midas touch? To begin with, finding a medication that unexpectedly takes over the market is just the first step in the process. It must be created, marketed, and the pricing must be negotiated with numerous health insurance providers and national health services. Some, like the UK’s National Health Service (NHS), are so big that they can drive down the price and, thus, the profit margin of even the most well-known medications. Wegovy is currently offered by the NHS for weight management under certain conditions.

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