Immunization, Vaccines and Biologicals

Vaccine Market

The vaccine market is different from any other commodity market. Compared to the pharmaceutical market it is relatively small, although growing fast. The vaccine market is rather concentrated on both supply and demand sides. It is highly regulated and largely dependent on public purchasers and donor policies. The vaccine market has very distinct features which increase the complexity of assessing and understanding pricing and procurement in their context. It is made up of individual markets for individual vaccines or vaccine types, each with their own specificities, particularly on the supply side.

The vaccine market accounts for a relatively small share (2-3%) of the global pharmaceutical market sales. However, there has been rapid growth over recent years, with the vaccine market quadrupling in value from USD 5 billion in 2000 to almost USD 24 billion in 2013, according to various sources. WHO growth estimations indicate the market may increase in value to almost 100 billion by 2025, with the arrival of new preventive, therapeutic and adult vaccines. In 2012, according to vaccine manufacturers, vaccines were in pipeline development for at least 31 infectious diseases. However, not all of these vaccines will make it to market. (IFPMA 2012:Delivering the promise of the Decade of Vaccines)

In addition to the arrival of new vaccines on the market, four factors account for growth in value:

  • Higher prices for new vaccines in middle-income and developed countries;
  • Greater demand from developing countries;
  • Global eradication and elimination efforts for some diseases (polio, measles rubella, etc.);
  • The addition of adolescent and adult markets to the pediatric market.

The production of vaccines is becoming a profitable and promising niche for the pharmaceutical industry that is particularly attractive for innovative and research based companies.

The vaccine market exhibits a variety of critical features. While there is divergence in the market for traditional vaccines between high income countries and low income countries, there is convergence in the market for some new vaccines. The market can further be defined by the limited number of both purchasers and suppliers creating both an oligopoloy and an oligosposony market dynamic. The uniqueness of the vaccine market is further defined by the differences between individual vaccine markets.

These key defining features of the vaccine market make operating within the market as a purchaser more complicated than for many other pharmaceuticals. Market intelligence is required to enable the purchaser to identify the best approaches needed to optimize procurement outcomes in each individual market.

Click on the links below to learn more about individual vaccine markets as well as global vaccine supply and demand.

Individual vaccine markets

This page provides information about the segmentation and dynamics of individual vaccine markets. It also addresses market divergence and convergence.

Global vaccine supply

This page provides an introduction to research based and emerging vaccine manufacturers and describes monopolistic and oligopolistic vaccine markets.

Global vaccine demand

This page introduces the main actors on the demand side of the vaccine market: high, middle and low income countries, pooled procurement agencies and the private sector.

Highlights