Life science reagents, which find application in biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and bioscience industries, have witnessed strong growth in the past decade. Its market is fragmented on account of the presence of a large number of multinational and regional players. Some of the well-entrenched big shots operating in the market are Sigma Aldrich, Life Technologies, Sigma Abbott Laboratories, and Bio-Rad. The end users of life science reagents are mostly forensic and clinical laboratories, commercial and contract manufacturers, and research and academics.
Q. How have recent developments impacted the market dynamics?
A. If you take the example of Brexit, the pound’s value has plummeted significantly on account of Britain’s decision to pull out of the European Union. This has forced life science reagent sellers to increase prices to support their top-line and bottom-line growth. Feeling the pinch of higher prices, scientists and researchers have already started scaling back studies. This is expected to dampen the demand for life science reagents from the U.K.
With Europe being the second largest market for the product and with higher prices of life science reagents in the U.K., the overall market dynamics might change, resulting in a depressed demand. This could affect Europe’s market share in the near future.
Q. What are the factors pushing market growth?
A. The increasing spend on research and development in biotechnology has been one of the main growth drivers in the biotechnology reagent market, a key component of the overall life science reagents market. Biotechnology reagents are compounds, substances, or mixtures used to uncover compounds or substances in biological solutions. They find application in bioscience, research, diagnosis, and education. Extensive research and development has led to advancements in technology. This, in turn, has increased the application areas of biotechnology and life sciences, thereby leading to continuous product development in the global life science reagents market.
Another key factor driving the growth of the life science reagents market is the development of chromatography, flow cytometry, and electrophoresis and their increasing use in the healthcare industry. These techniques are gaining popularity in diagnosis and treatment monitoring, thus boosting the market. Further, efforts by governments worldwide to improve the healthcare sector by developing biotechnology is also propelling the market.
Q. Will prospective new players have it easy in the market?
A. Mature market players centered in Europe and North America are holders of maximum number of patents, giving vendors in these regions a competitive edge over those in developing countries such as India and China. This makes it extremely difficult for new players, especially in developing economies, as they do not hold as many patents as their western counterparts. Larger firms, especially big healthcare organizations and research institutes, manage to procure patents on account of their high spend on research and development. This poses barriers to the entry of new players who cannot afford to buy and maintain sophisticated instruments that are a must for research of life science products. This is proving to be a major constraint for the growth of the life science reagents market.