Part 1 of 2
The story of Eli Lilly’s open innovation journey—how one company developed a mature model
Kevin Schwartz Bret Huff
Kevin Schwartz, Director, PrTM (firstname.lastname@example.org), and Bret huff, VP of Chemical Products r&D, Eli Lilly and Company, (email@example.com)
Over the last decade, the giant pharmaceutical companies have moved away from their reliance on “blockbuster” drugs as a basis of earnings and toward other models. Part of the shift has required going outside the “just invented here” Research & Development model that these corporations embraced in the past. In this article, the first of a two-part series, the authors describe how Eli Lilly moved into “open innovation”—using partnerships and alliances to find new products—and how the process has evolved to one of “mature” open innovation. In the second part of the series, the authors will explain how to apply these techniques to other companies and industries and where leading companies may be going next with the open innovation concept.
ver the past 15 years, Eli Lilly and Company has embraced a culture of open innovation—moving from the traditional thinking in the pharmaceutical industry (“just invented here”) to a new model that has paid big dividends and today could be considered Level 3 in the maturity model in Exhibit 1 on page 20. Like other leaders in open innovation practices, the company has evolved an extensive and powerful network of Research & Development partnerships that adds to its internal capabilities and helps it drive new revenues and more rapEli Lilly’s senior management idly bring new products to market (see Exhibit 2 team made a conscious decision on page 21). However, open innoto invest in building a worldvation can mean many class capability for collaborative things to different people and even leading product development.” companies vary in how they pursue the concept. As the open innovation