How pharma can learn and benefit from disruptive entrepreneurs

The final season of the much-hyped business drama, Succession, features a start-up streaming media entrepreneur going toe-to-toe with the old guard of traditional media. The Rupert Murdoch-like mogul and main character, Logan Roy, is pushing for his Waystar Media incumbent – the big fish – to gobble up upstart Lukas Mattson’s disruptive business.

The tables soon turn, however, when it becomes painfully apparent that Mattson’s business, GoJo, is the future, so his little fish gets ready to eat the big one. Any smart exec knows that this fictional small-screen tale could all too easily become his or her reality.

This case of art imitating life shows that innovation is essential to growth. And failure to innovate can lead to a slow death. In life sciences, as in any other sector, win the innovation race and you could be the next Ginkgo Bioworks or Mammoth Biosciences, but lose and you could have a Relenza or Ben-Gay Aspirin nightmare on your hands.

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