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BIO-Europe Fall 2019: Buzz from the Show Floor

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Each year, thousands of Pharma professionals – everyone from scientists and business development professionals to consultants and CEOs – converge on the BIO International Conferences. This year’s BIO Fall event in Hamburg, Germany, was no different. I’ve attended these partnering conferences for many years now, and each year, there are the typical mainstay themes – neuro failures, growth in emerging markets, patient voice.

Then there is the buzz that permeates the conversations you hear the minute you hit the exhibit floor, which makes the conference so worthwhile. Here is some of the buzz we encountered this year:

Coping with Pricing Pressures

Drug pricing pressure in the U.S. continues to be fueled by the current political climate, showing no end in sight, putting the cost of developing a drug and the stakeholders involved in the crosshairs of the development process. As a result, many of the people responsible for Search & Evaluation, Business Development and R&D have been tasked with finding creative ways to leverage technology to fill in the gap of human capital left behind by tightened budgets. Although the human element can never be replaced, advanced analytics platforms like the one we offer, emerged as a vital solution that can help researchers uncover trends and predictive insights. By using AI to gather and contextualize disconnected, external data sources, planners in Pharma can now spend more time vetting decisions instead of gathering siloed data.

Identifying the Next Blockbuster Drug

The amount of data available online is overwhelming. In fact, by 2020, it is estimated that 1.7MB of data will be created every second for every person on earth. Researchers and business strategists in Pharma are tasked with finding early signals of innovation. But being the first to identify the next potential trend or blockbuster drug is easier said than done. Most of this work today is done manually, analyzing patent filings, conference programs, research papers, results of clinical trials, etc., all in an effort to find the proverbial needle in the haystack. Next generation advanced analytics is paving the way for leading Pharma brands to make sense of all the disparate data sources and separate the signals from the noise, leading to better and more accurate long-term investment decisioning.

Combating Rare Diseases

According to the National Institute of Health, nearly 1 in 10 Americans are affected by rare diseases and more than 95% of them do not have an approved treatment. The Office of Orphan Drug Development has made grants available for funding clinical research, however, identifying which areas to pursue and what is likely to win out remains a challenge. While the stakes are high and development cycles are long, there are many aspects of progress that need to be continually monitored in order to determine where to invest next.

Taken together, this year’s buzz made it evident that the work we are doing at Signals Analytics delivers real value and aligns with the needs and challenges of the sector. Leading manufacturers are recognizing the impact that AI and next generation advanced analytics can have on their business and how to incorporate it into various use cases. To learn how Signals Analytics can help you, schedule a demo.


Written by Gerald Sirag

Director of Life Sciences, Signals Analytics

Gerald Sirag is the head of the Life Science Enterprise team at Signals Analytics. Gerald joins Signals from Thomson Reuters, where he was responsible for managing the North American Life Sciences mid-market region. Prior to joining Thomson Reuters, he was a member of the Life Sciences consulting division at Deloitte M&A. Gerald is experienced in both informatics and consulting, supporting pharmaceutical executives across the entire drug development lifecycle.


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Signals Analytics is a next generation advanced analytics platform that extracts context from uncorrelated external data sources to uncover trends and predictive insights. The company’s 4Cs – connected, continuous, contextual and configurable – are what sets the solution apart from traditional market research approaches and standard data analytics providers. The company serves pharmaceutical, beauty, personal care and food and beverage manufacturers, including Procter & Gamble, Nestle, Johnson & Johnson, Bayer, Roche, Mars and others.


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