Insight journal - Deals and alliances

Co-promotion and Co-marketing: recent partnering industry trends

Posted on 11 July 2014

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This article reflects on the latest industry trends in the co-marketing and co-promotion dealmaking in the biopharma sector.

Two major forms of joint marketing are used to promote a product on the market, namely co-promotion and co-marketing. They are also referred to as joint marketing alliances.

Co-marketing has been present in the pharmaceutical industry for much longer than co-promotion.

Co-promotion deals are an increasingly common feature of partnering deals as smaller companies, in particular biotech’s seek to secure future options for growth beyond being a supplier of technology in return for royalty streams. They are seeking to enjoy the greater rewards offered by the marketing of products direct to the buyer.

The fact that the licensor can demand and obtain a co-promote right/option in a partnering agreement not only demonstrates the power of the licensor at the negotiating table but also the competition between bigpharma licensees for the best opportunities.

According to Current Agreements life science deals and alliance database, there have been 350 co-promotion deals and over 300 co-marketing deals in the last five years.

Figure 1: Co-promotion partnering since 2009








Source: Current Agreements, 2014

Figure 2: Co-marketing partnering since 2009








Source: Current Agreements, 2014

Co-marketing deals have remained at low levels when compared to co-promotion deals. This is probably due to the fact that larger pharmaceutical companies are simply not willing to relinquish control of its trademarks to a third party for marketing purposes.

This is understandable, since larger companies are valued based on their intangible assets and goodwill, and the potential of those assets to delivery future revenue streams. The last thing a larger pharmaceutical company would be willing to risk is irreparable damage one of its trademark brands by a small, inexperienced partner company.

The following figures expand the data to differentiate between pure and multicomponent deals. This is important as it allows differentiations between deals signed purely for the purposes of implementing a co-promotion/marketing arrangement and those which incorporate a co-promotion/marketing element in anticipation of future business aspirations to become a product marketer.

Figure 3: Pure versus multi-component co-promotion deal announcements, 2009-2014












Source: Current Agreements, 2014

The following figure attempts to address this issue, and indicates that the majority of pure co-promotion deals are signed at the time when the product is either ready to market or already marketed. This makes sense as it is the time when a company’s attention will turn to maximizing returns through market penetration either in the same or different territories.

Figure 4: Pure versus multi-component co-marketing deal announcements, 2009-2014












Source: Current Agreements, 2014

The most active co-promotion dealmakers observed since 2009 are AstraZeneca (18), GSK (17), Merck and Co (15) and Astellas 14).  Unlike co-promotion deal making which consists only of the big pharma players, the most active co-marketing dealmakers since 2009 are Agilent Technologies (10), Illumina 87), Caliper Life Sciences (7) and Qiagen (6).

Figure 5: Top co-promotion and co-marketing deals by value since 2009











Source: Current Agreements, 2014

The data in this article was abstracted from the Co-promotion and Co-marketing Partnering Terms and Agreements report, which provides comprehensive understanding and unprecedented access to the co-promotion and co-marketing agreements entered into by the world’s biopharma companies. In addition the report provides details of deals broken down by deal type, therapy focus, and company A-Z. The report provides a detailed understanding and analysis of how and why companies enter co-promotion and co-marketing deals - more details here.


The above information has been abstracted from the following resources:



Read: more co-promotion deals in pharma, biotech, life science partnering deal news, insights and glossary

Read: more co-marketing deals in pharma, biotech, life science partnering deal news, insights and glossary

Buy report: Co-promotion and Co-marketing Partnering Terms and Agreements report

View: Current Partnering’s Partnering Scorecard – view top life science partnering deals by value

View: Current Partnering’s Deal Metrics – the latest deal trend infographics for life science deal making

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One Response to “Co-promotion and Co-marketing: recent partnering industry trends”


  1. Co-promotion and Co-marketing: industry trends|... says:

    […] “Co-promotion and Co-marketing life sciences dealmaking explains the industry trends in marketing and promotion of products.”  […]

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