Accenture, Google hope to lure Big Pharma clients GSK, Pfizer and more to new data platform

Google Cloud President Tariq Shaukat heard "an overriding sentiment" when he spoke with pharma and life science executives recently at the annual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference: The pharma industry is behind in modernizing and using digital technology.

To that end, his company is partnering with Accenture on an open architecture platform to accelerate discovery, research and delivery for pharma and life sciences companies.

Accenture’s platform, called Intient, strikes an exclusive partnership with Google Cloud to migrate all parts of the now seven-year-old technology onto a single end-to-end architecture with Google. The intent is to combine Accenture’s industry experience and connections with Google's data analytics and artificial intelligence capabilities.

Intient clients include GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer, Bayer and many other top 25 pharma companies, said Simon Eaves, group chief executive of products at Accenture.

RELATED: Overwhelmed and confused, pharma marketers? Time to embrace 'New Science,' consultancy says

“For Google Cloud it’s a unique opportunity to accelerate that modernization and innovation. I do think that will yield real benefits for patients and health outcomes,” Shaukat said.

The two companies have already worked together in pharma and life science, but the new agreement working across research, clinical development and treatment delivery will speed up data analytics and the application of artificial intelligence to do things like figure out new correlations between symptoms, health events and treatments.

Eaves said the two groups have already begun to work in research and are realizing drastic time reductions for productivity—for instance, taking task completion times down from weeks to minutes.

RELATED: Sanofi, Google team up in search of new treatments, marketing solutions

Another key to the partnership is open architecture and working with others on solutions.

“Our philosophy within Google Cloud is anchored in open architecture. We believe that the open architecture will help to expand the Intient network to allow a broader range of independent software vendors or ISVs and content providers to really build on top of the platform that Accenture has created,” Eaves said, adding that "there is no doubt the needs of the industry will have to be met by the collaboration across multiple players.”