Shire Pharmaceuticals has been named the marketing company of the year for the second year running in the PharmaTimes Marketer of the Year competition, the results of which were announced in London last night.

Shire, which took the top spot just ahead of MSD, was also successful in the individual and team categories, with the company’s Louise Finke named aspiring marketer of the year, Nadia Frascineti won the European national brand manager title, and the firm took home the top prize for marketing team of the year.

Fifty-five finalists from 23 companies took part in the annual competency-based, benchmarking competition, where finalists were tasked with a role-play challenge based on current healthcare trends. This year’s theme was around developing a compelling value proposition to improve market access, with the competition judged by an expert panel of industry and NHS leaders.  

Other winners were: Liz Crompton of Abbott for new marketer, Melissa Elliott of Ferring Pharmaceuticals for senior marketer, Oliver Hunt of MSD for aspiring marketing manager, and Rachel Gooch of MundiPharma as regional European marketer.

In addition, Life Healthcare Communications was named the marketing communications agency team of the year.

Simon Grime, managing director of communications at, a competition sponsor, said the challenging and fast-changing healthcare environment meant pharma marketers needed to be open to new ideas and have the ability to respond to the changing needs of their key customers. “The PharmaTimes Marketer of the Year competition encourages and rewards marketers by emulating the potentially challenging scenarios they have to navigate to ensure they maximise their brand’s potential,” he said.

Gary Killington, managing director of PI Partnership, a competition sponsor, agreed, adding that the competition “shows that innovative and differentiating campaigns are still possible”.

Andrew Forman, marketing and sales director at Insight Research Group, sponsor of the marketing communications agency team, said the competition is an important test for marketers because of how it evolves each year to ensure that what is being measured closely reflects the issues at play in the new world in which the industry operates. “It is also a great opportunity to reflect on and celebrate our talents and skills as an industry at a time when there are many pressures and many critics who don’t appear to value what our industry does and what it continues to achieve for healthcare.”   

The aim of the competition is not only to recognise and reward marketing excellence but also to provide professional development through peer benchmarking and mentoring as well as providing wider industry learnings on marketing skills and competencies.

Nathalie Rowell, managing partner at VirdisPharma, sponsor of the regional European marketer category, said being involved in the competition was an excellent way for finalists to get exposure and recognition for being an asset to a company. “The marketing environment, after the salesforce, is the one to suffer most from the new directions the industry has to take to survive, so for marketers, competing and being identified as talent is critical to any career in marketing.”

For a full list of finalists and photographs please visit: