Daiichi Sankyo Co. Ltd.

Stock Exchange: XTKS • Ticker: 4568 • HQ: Tokyo, Japan • Employees: 15,249

Ranking by technical area
Ranking by strategic pillar


Daiichi Sankyo rises one place, with signs of improvement in several areas. The company is slightly more transparent regarding its market influence activities; it has expanded equitable pricing to one more product; it is one of the biggest risers in Capacity Building; and it makes a clear commitment to reporting suspected falsified medicines to national authorities. Nevertheless, it drops in Patents & Licensing, with limited evidence of an access-oriented approach to intellectual property. There is also no evidence it uses performance measures to consistently track progress toward access-related targets. It has no structured donation programmes and has been found in breach of civil laws governing marketing practices.

Change since 2014

Still lags in access-to-medicine management, where it lacks solid management structures and performance measurements.

Shows some improvement in the transparency of its marketing and lobbying activities.

Its relevant pipeline is approximately 50% larger than in 2014.

Has moved a greater proportion of R&D projects through the pipeline than in the previous reporting period.

Has equitable pricing strategies for one more product than in 2014.

Has implemented a global policy for issuing drug recalls.

Has registered more products in high-burden countries than in 2014.

Improves its accountability for its sales agents’ pricing practices, by providing guidelines and monitoring prices.

Provides price-point data for the first time.

Has still not disclosed a pro-access IP-management strategy.

Has improved in capacity building outside the pharmaceutical value chain and for R&D.

Discloses the strongest commitment to reporting suspected falsified medicines, relative to peers.


Consider future access during development. Daiichi Sankyo can make specific access plans for all relevant R&D projects (e.g., affordable pricing and sufficient supply commitments) as they move along the pipeline.

Incorporate insights from country-level marketing codes into new global code. Daiichi Sankyo can incorporate insights from its many country-level marketing codes of conduct into its newly released global code. It can also expand its enforcement processes to cover all third parties globally.

Expand equitable pricing strategies. Daiichi Sankyo can expand existing equitable pricing strategies to more high-burden countries with high inequality. For example, its pricing strategy for olmesartan medoxomil (Benicar/Olmetec®) could be expanded to countries such as Indonesia and Pakistan.

Develop a public position on IP management. Daiichi Sankyo can develop and disclose a public position on where it plans to file for and enforce patents.

Enlarge activities in low and middle-income countries. Daiichi Sankyo can widen its presence in these countries to ensure its focus on “innovative business” also delivers new products to unserved populations. It would need a detailed access strategy that uses an appropriate range of product deployment approaches.

Set registration targets. Daiichi Sankyo can set time-bound targets for registering new products for diseases in scope that prioritise low- and middle-income countries where there is a need.

Join efforts to combat antimicrobial resistance. Daiichi Sankyo has two antibiotics on the WHO Model Essential Medicines List (EML) that are used in clinical practice. The company can take action to increase access to these medicines, while ensuring their responsible use. Daiichi Sankyo can join global efforts to address antimicrobial resistance, for example by signing the Declaration by the Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology and Diagnostics Industries on Combating Antimicrobial Resistance.

Sales and operations

In 2015, following its divestment of generics arm Ranbaxy, Daiichi Sankyo moved to a business model focused on “innovative business”. The company’s primary focus is on discovering and developing medicines for cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, and oncology. The divestment has reduced the company’s exposure to developing countries. Daiichi Sankyo currently has sales in 44 countries within the scope of the Index.

Sales in countries in scope
Sales by division
Sales by region

Portfolio and pipeline

Daiichi Sankyo has a small portfolio, of 13 medicines and four preventive vaccines, for relevant diseases. It has a mid-sized pipeline of 20 R&D projects that address the needs of people in countries in scope.

It has seven medicines targeting one or more non-communicable diseases (NCDs), four targeting a range of infectious diseases, and one for treating maternal haemorrhage. The company gained marketing authorisation from the FDA in 2015 for edoxaban (Savaysa®) for the reduction of stroke risk in non-valvular atrial fibrillation and the treatment of venous thromboembolism. The company is developing medicines and vaccines for lower respiratory infections, diarrhoeal diseases, TB, malaria, and eight NCDs. It has multiple new discovery-stage projects.

Several projects target high-priority product gaps with low commercial incentive, including discovery-stage projects for malaria and TB. The company has moved DS-2969, (for C. difficile infection) from discovery into phase I trials.

Products per disease category

Daiichi Sankyo has products for communicable diseases and NCDs. The latter mainly target respiratory and cardiovascular diseases.

Pipeline projects

Daiichi Sankyo partners with the Medicines for Malaria Venture and the TB Alliance to conduct small molecule screening. Prices will be set on the basis of a no-gains, no-loss policy in most countries in scope.

First-line treatments and essential medicines

Of the 17 products in Daiichi Sankyo’s portfolio, 10 are listed on the WHO EML and/or as first-line treatments. This includes four vaccines for the prevention of measles, pertussis and tetanus.

Pipeline by stage of development
– Innovative medicines and vaccines

Two of Daiichi Sankyo’s medicines are in phase II trials: CS-3150 for hypertensive heart disease and DS-8500 for diabetes.

Pipeline by stage of development
– Adaptive medicines and vaccines

Daiichi Sankyo’s adaptive pipeline includes numerous new discovery-stage projects, including projects targeting malaria and TB.

Please refer to the pdf of the report card (that can be downloaded here) for information on Daiichi Sankyo’s performance per technical area.

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