It's been a big couple of years for the animal health industry. The animal drug and vaccines market is running at $22 billion a year and expected to grow at 5.7% compound annual growth, faster than the market for human medicines. Zoetis ($ZTS) was spun off from Pfizer ($PFE) into the largest standalone animal health company in the world last year. Eli Lilly ($LLY), which owns Elanco, recently agreed to buy Novartis' ($NVS) animal health unit for $5.4 billion, which will catapult it into the second-largest animal health business globally.
Spending on R&D for animal drugs, while still small, is growing as biotechs look for treatments for cancer and pain and other conditions in pets, sometimes turning to human drugs as a blueprint. While the market is much smaller than the human drug industry, there is also a much lower cost of entry, allowing drugs to be developed and brought to market faster, cheaper and with higher margins than those enjoyed by Big Pharma.
In a dynamic market like this there is lots to know and a need to discover it quickly. And we intend to be the go-to tool for you to do that. And so we want to welcome you to the inaugural issue of FierceAnimalHealth and thank Catalent, our charter sponsor, for its launch. For those of you who are familiar with our publications, you know how we work. We will cover the full spectrum of the industry, from drug research to regulatory approval, to sales, focusing on the news that drives the business. We will cover the major players in the industry and the smaller players who are challenging them with innovation. Following the FierceMarkets unique approach, we will not only break news but provide the context to put that news into perspective to make it actionable by you. And we are all online, so we are with you anytime and all of the time, making sure you get the news now.
For those of you new to us, we are glad you have checked us out and ask you to spread the word. We have covered many of the largest animal health companies as part of FiercePharma's coverage of the human drug industry. With FierceAnimalHealth, we will be keeping tabs on a slew of companies that are new to us and so we urge you to help us get to know you and to keep us apprised of the essential news in the industry. And please pass along your suggestions. Associate Editor Justin Heifetz will walk point on this publication, so let either or both of us know what's up.