Product details

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Abstract

The case describes the development of a new analgesic (painkiller) drug for the German subsidiary of a large Swiss pharmaceutical company. Development was successfully completed by a dedicated unit, and the drug gained a large market share quickly after launch. However, irresponsible use of the drug caused severe side-effects in a few patients, leading to a crisis which ultimately led the German health authority to restrict the drug to a small niche indication. The restriction eliminated most of the commercial potential of the drug. Many factors contributed to this product failure; the question is whether there were systematic management errors. The teaching objectives are to explore (1) project organisation: setting up a dedicated unit for a project, impacts on organisational interfaces and incentives; (2) cross-functional co-operation: the ability of different functions to communicate and work together, internal and external; and (3) internal projects: the challenge of carrying out an international project simultaneously in Germany, the US and China.
Location:
Industry:
Size:
30,000 employees
Other setting(s):
1996

About

Abstract

The case describes the development of a new analgesic (painkiller) drug for the German subsidiary of a large Swiss pharmaceutical company. Development was successfully completed by a dedicated unit, and the drug gained a large market share quickly after launch. However, irresponsible use of the drug caused severe side-effects in a few patients, leading to a crisis which ultimately led the German health authority to restrict the drug to a small niche indication. The restriction eliminated most of the commercial potential of the drug. Many factors contributed to this product failure; the question is whether there were systematic management errors. The teaching objectives are to explore (1) project organisation: setting up a dedicated unit for a project, impacts on organisational interfaces and incentives; (2) cross-functional co-operation: the ability of different functions to communicate and work together, internal and external; and (3) internal projects: the challenge of carrying out an international project simultaneously in Germany, the US and China.

Settings

Location:
Industry:
Size:
30,000 employees
Other setting(s):
1996

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