GBS hires L.E.K. Consulting to support China market entry strategy

10 August 2021 2 min. read

Life sciences group GBS has enlisted L.E.K. Consulting to support the China market entry strategy for one of its new products.

Based in Hong Kong, GBS is a company that provides diagnostic tests for people that have diabetes. As part of the firm’s growth strategy across the Asia Pacific region, the firm is eyeing the massive Chinese market – it is estimated that by 2025 China’s diabetic population living with and actively managing diabetes will have reached 70 million people. 

GBS believes that it is well positioned to tap a significant share of the market with its so-called Saliva-Glucose Diabetes Test (SGBT). This test is a non-invasive, saliva-based glucose test for diabetes management. Contrary to traditional blood testing, the SGBT measures glucose in saliva, meaning that it offers people living with diabetes with a more comfortable way of monitoring their glucose levels. 

GBS hires L.E.K. Consulting to support China market entry strategy

In a survey commissioned by GBS as part of its development and go-to-market strategy, researchers found that 7 out of 10 diabetes patients in Asia Pacific were “seriously interested” in purchasing the SGBT product when it’s released, as long as the product was accurate and reliable. 

In the run-up to its commercial launch in China, GBS has hired L.E.K. Consulting to support its commercial partner strategy. The global strategy consulting firm will explore the market to identify a shortlist of suitable commercial partners for distribution in China, said GBS chief executive officer Harry Simeonidis. 

“China is a prominent and complex market, and we must anticipate distribution capabilities, regulatory requirements, and reimbursement guidelines and protocols. Thus it is essential we collaborate with the right partners early to maximise our product launch,” he explained. 

George Syrmalis, chief executive officer of The iQ Group (a bioscience investment consortium that backs GBS), added: “In preparation for the clinical trial process, the identification of a sublicense will be a critical aspect of the Chinese regulatory approval process, and will ultimately generate sales and revenue for GBS. This proactive approach will expedite our ‘go-to market’ strategy.” 

L.E.K. Consulting’s main selection criteria for potential partners in China will include existing market access capability, proven marketing capability, existing clinical and retail relationships, existing distributor networks, national coverage, and internal marketing and sales capabilities targeting top clinical and retail accounts. 

According to the latest IDF Diabetes Atlas, 700 million people worldwide will have diabetes by 2045, with more than one third of this group based in Asia Pacific.