The global CRO services market is estimated to grow from USD 115.1 billion by 2027 from USD 68.3 billion in 2022, at a CAGR of 11.0% during the forecast period. Growth in the CRO services market can mainly be attributed to factors such as the increasing investment in pharmaceutical R&D, rising number of clinical trials, high cost of in-house drug development (encouraging pharma-biotech companies to opt for outsourcing), and the rising prevalence of orphan and rare diseases (creating new revenue pockets for CROs). Growth in the drugs and biologics market despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the increasing demand for specialized testing services among end users, and the need for novel clinical trial designs for complex cell and gene therapies are also expected to offer a wide range of growth opportunities to players operating in this market.
The global CRO services market is highly competitive with the presence of many local, regional, and global players. The global CRO services market is primarily dominated by IQVIA Inc. (US), Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings (US), PPD, Inc. (a part of Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc.) (US), ICON plc (US), and Syneos Health Inc. (US); these players together accounted for ~45–50% of the market share in 2021.
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IQVIA Inc. (US) accounted for an estimated share of 12–13% and thus, dominated the CRO services market in 2021. This is mainly due to its strong performance in the biopharmaceutical services industry and wide geographical coverage. The company’s foothold in the market is primarily attributed to its strong technical and service capabilities, good client relationships, diversified service offerings, and ability to expand the penetration of its offerings. IQVIA has registered significant growth in the biopharmaceutical services industry and is present in all major markets, including the US, Japan, Germany, France, Spain, and Italy, in addition to BRIC. To increase its geographic presence and customer base, the company focuses on service launches, collaborations, and expansions.
PPD, Inc. (a part of Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc.) (US)is one of the prominent players in the global CRO services market with a wide geographic presence. The company is well-positioned in the market and focuses on providing discovery, development, and post-approval services. Its strong and wide range of services helps the company to generate higher revenues and strengthen its position in the global CRO services market. As part of its business strategy, PPD has established strong relationships with pharmaceutical manufacturers, research institutes, and laboratories across the globe. PPD focuses on agreements, expansions, collaborations, and service launches to maintain its leading position in the market. For instance, in April 2021, PPD, Inc. collaborated with Science 37 (US) to design, build, test, implement, and execute digital trials using Science 37s DCT SaaS-based technology platform. However, in December 2021, the company was acquired by Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc. for USD 17.4 billion.
ICON Plc (US)ICON plc accounted for an estimated share of 8–10% of the CRO services market in 2021. The company is well-positioned in the market and focuses on providing clinical research, consulting, and commercial services. The company focuses on developments such as acquisition and expansions to enhance its strategic position in the global market. For instance, in June 2021, ICON plc acquired PRA Health Sciences. This acquisition has significantly strengthened ICON’s strategic position in the market. Moreover, in November 2021, ICON expanded its sites at six different locations across North America and Europe, thus enhancing its global footprint.
Contract Research Organization (CROs) Services Market by Type (Early phase, Clinical, Lab, Consulting), Therapeutic Area (Oncology, Infectious Disease, Neurology, Immunology, Hematology, Vaccines), End User - Global Forecast to 2027
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