Forecasting Failure: Learning from the Accuracy of Hindsight

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From business development and marketing within biopharmaceutical companies to corporate finance and equity research houses in the City and on Wall Street, forecasting is a critical but deceptively abstract art.  No matter the role one plays, the consequences of missing the mark on a forecast can range from embarrassment to catastrophe – people lose jobs, and investors can lose money. Today, accuracy in forecasting has more than ever to do with understanding how stakeholders (physicians, patients, payers etc.) will react to the product, than the intrinsic attributes of the product. But how do we know what is real, what is wrong, and what may just work out in the end?  Through three informative case studies, forecasting drivers are evaluated for their predictability and ultimate impact on the commercial success of a launch and the preceding forecasting efforts. Ultimately, price and access represent the highest impact, but least predictable factors dictating commercial performance – and learning from these hallmark forecasts and launches, can help to inform more accurate estimates today and in the future.