‘Industry 4.0’ has enabled complete automation of complex processes in various sectors including packaging and automobile, with manufacturing industries leveraging the most out of it. A new entrant in the list are life sciences companies working in the fields of pharmaceuticals, technologies, biotechnology, biomedical, life systems technologies, cosmeceuticals, food processing, nutraceuticals, environmental, and biomedical devices. Research and development being the core of life sciences companies, laborites are an integral part of it. ‘Smart lab’ is a major trend in life sciences and lab equipment market, as end-users are demanding automation of processes to enhance pace of research programs and better visualization of end results. Consequently, during the yesteryears, the market has witnessed major companies introducing lab equipment centric towards automation. For instance, Tecan Group Ltd. introduced AC Extraction Plate developed on its registered TICE™ (Tecan Immobilized Coating Extraction) technology. The equipment is automation-friendly solution intended to streamline sample preparation for certain analysis of small molecules. The plate decreases the process of preparing samples to a basic ‘pipette and shake’ routine, excluding the necessity for laborious filtration, centrifugation and solvent evaporation phases. The company has also introduced Freedom EVO 75 that is a compact sized pipetting robot for throughput applications ranging low to medium and to handle repetitive liquid handling tasks. Not just automation, life sciences and lab equipment market players are also integrating Novel technology of ‘IoT’ can connect several things in a lab, from pipettes and research protocols to manuscripts and data storage. At present, cloud-based technologies are being deployed by scientists and researchers for only applications such as next-generation sequencing and mass spectrometry, in sample centric manner. Tracing further opportunities in real-time data sharing by integration of technology, life sciences and lab equipment market players are manufacturing tools with enhanced and secured data storage along with easy to use interface. For example, BioData Ltd. supplies numerous electronic lab notebooks (ELNs) variants. The ELNs are provided via a number of different cloud providers including Amazon Web Services, Rackspace, and SoftLayer. The cloud based technology ensures sufficient backup and is also a collaborative tool enabling real time monitoring and inputs by individuals.
Similalry, Merck KGaA under its Accelerator Program, has come up with an innovative technology that connects laboratory instruments and industrial measuring instruments. The product is concentrated towards user centricity in laboratory settings, with a view to ease workflows. Consequently, it accelerates the administration and evaluation processes of data sets at a significant pace. Hence, integration of technology such as IoT and cloud computing is a major trend in the global life sciences and lab equipment market, that was valued to be $44.38 billion in 2018.
Genomics to consumer electronics, research programs and inevitable fragment of development:
Globally, there are numerous private as well as governmental bodies aiding the influx of investment in various research programs in the field of pharmaceutical, biotechnology and bio medical devices that is further adding impetus to the global market demand. For example, The National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. is funding a $25m ‘All of Us’ research program. It will collect several health and biometric data that includes samples of DNA and blood, information on daily routine of individuals, and environmental data from 1 million Americans. Visualization of these datasets will spur the development of personalized medicine, as it will assist in better understanding of health of people on the basis of various parameters.
Application verticals of lab equipment are not juts limited to pharmaceuticals and biomedical company, but the modern consumer electronics companies are also investing into R&D for devices centric to healthcare. For example, Apple Inc. annual R&D spending has increased from $1 billion in 2009 to an estimated over $13 billion in 2018. Company has filed numerous patents around wearable devices such as biometrics sensors equipped AirPods, Apple Watch with UV monitoring, and gesture recognition technology for AR/VR applications. Similar to the growth in the number of research programs in various field of life sciences including cell culture, cancer research, drug discovery, and genomics, consumer electronics companies with R&D investments is influencing the global technical lab equipment market demand. For example, in the field of genomics, the total number of patents published in the last 5 years is estimated to be 17,750. And, in the field of technology, the total number of patents published in last 5 years under ‘virtual reality’ is estimated to be 14,780. Such figures depicts the high number of research programs being initiated annually in various fields. As a consequence, the global life sciences and lab equipment market size is estimated to be progressing at a CAGR of 7.37%, during the forecast period of 2019-2025.
The U.S. conducts 46% of the global research and development (R&D) in life sciences – UNESCO:
North America is reckoned to be the leading region globally in terms of demand for equipment employed in life sciences research. The region held 38.91% of the global life sciences and lab equipment market share in 2018, with the U.S. being the major contributor. Some facts in support of the above argument are listed below:
Pharmaceutical and medical instrument contributes 4% to the U.S. GDP:
According to the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, in the U.S., life-sciences companies conducted R&D of $96.5 billion in 2013. Nearly 22% of indigenous pharmaceutical employees are employed directly in R&D that includes it in the list of most research-intensive industries. This ration is nearly 4 times that of the average U.S. industry. Moreover, in 2015, the total productivity of pharmaceutical and medical-instrument subsectors’ was almost 4% of the nation’s GDP. Stating the trade data, export value of products from life sciences industries was about $90 billion in 2017. It is to be noted that pharmaceutical exports have grown 191% in the last 15 years, while medical-equipment exports grew by over 185%. This indicates that the pharmaceutical industry is the fastest growing application vertical in the global life sciences and lab equipment market. The rising trends of drug discovery, regenerative medicines, and clinical trials have led this segment to be progressing with a CAGR of 8.84%, going through up to 2025.
Drug discovery and clinical trials rise in the U.S., creating opportunities for market players:
Drug discovery is a key application vertical of global life sciences and lab equipment market. As the pharmaceutical industry is the major contributor in life sciences research program in the U.S, R&D towards drug discovery is major market driver. According to the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) that regulates the pharmaceutical industry at every step of the process, approved 59 novel drugs in 2018. Each year the figure is increasing, as in 2016 the number of approved drugs by FDA were 22 and 46 in 2017. As both the drug testing and drug discovery, and clinical trial entities require equipment to test and confirm regulations, the U.S life sciences and lab equipment market demand is accelerating.
The budget requests $6.1 billion in total resources for FDA:
The pivotal role of FDA to protect the public health hinge on the capability of the Agency’s laboratories to rapidly and precisely examine samples. The labs specialize as Human and Animal Food (HAF) Labs or Medical Products, Tobacco, and Specialty (MPTS) Labs. As the FDA regulates 75% of the U.S. food supply, it clearly indicates its potential as a customer in the life sciences and lab equipment market. It is to be noted that regulations on Human Drugs accounts for 30% of FDA’s budget and food regulatory consumes 20% of the budget. Therefore, 50% of the budget is allocated for food and drugs are the major application verticals in the life sciences and lab equipment market.
Life Sciences and Lab Equipment Market Companies:
Some of the key players operating in the market are Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc., Agilent Technologies, Inc., Danaher Corporation, Waters Corporation, PerkinElmer, Inc., Becton, Dickinson and Company, F. Hoffmann-LA Roche AG, Bruker Corporation, Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc., and Shimadzu Corporation.