TripleTree was a proud sponsor of this year’s AXS23 Summit
in Las Vegas. Organized by Asembia, AXS23 is an annual gathering that “provides a unique opportunity for attendees to immerse themselves in the specialty pharma market, reconnect with current and prospective partners, and shape the future of the industry.” We sat down with Jeff Jones, Scott Donahue, Mark Wise, and Carmine Cafasso to hear their insights coming out of this year’s conference.
Q: The specialty pharmacy sector, and pharma services more broadly, continue to attract market attention. What makes the AXS23 conference so important and why do you think attendance continues to grow for this industry gathering?
A: The specialty pharmacy and pharma services sectors continue to attract market attention based on two important realities:
- The overall market size and outlook around spend, especially for specialty pharmacy, both today, and with respect to an increasing pipeline for specialty drug development
- The opportunity to solve access / adherence challenges and improve clinical outcomes for patients.
These market dynamics create the catalyst to attend AXS23, which continues to be a conference that attracts every relevant participant in the pharma ecosystem, including large pharma, payers, wholesalers, specialized service providers, private equity, consultants, and investment bankers.
Q: What was the mood at this year’s conference and how would you characterize the types of activities and interactions happening in Las Vegas this year?
A: There is no doubt about it, AXS23 was a place to get business done. TripleTree observed a broad cross-section of attendees, from leadership and sales organizations who were meeting with major clients to advance business agendas, financial market participants engaging in substantive interactions with leaders from across the pharmacy, specialty pharmacy and pharma services ecosystem, and interesting mix of both large hospitals/academic medical centers s as well as small independent pharmacies/pharmacists.
Q: What were the big take-aways from this year’s AXS23 conference? What is the industry focused on right now?
A: There were several consistent themes surfaced during this year’s AXS23 conference:
- The industry is focused on improving the margin profiles of specialty pharmacies. This theme surfaced in many ways, across multiple discussions in Las Vegas, from continued attention and focus on rare and orphan drugs, to a heightened interest in services like infusion (AIC and home), to 340B capabilities and specialty pharmacy services for hospitals.
- There is shifting sentiment around oncology treatments and momentum around shifting treatments outside of the hospital setting. Growing pressure from payers is shaping where treatments are delivered (and paid for) and there is a movement towards shifting which treatments are delivered outside of the hospital including lighter support therapies (e.g., nutrition and hydration) and certain areas of chemotherapy.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) has a role in pharmacy and specialty pharmacy. Attendees were keen to understand how the application of AI, ChatGPT, and machine learning can streamline every stripe of pharma services.
This year’s AXS23 conference continued to impress and reflected the continued market interest, attention, and opportunity associated with the specialty pharmacy and pharma services sectors. The conversations in Las Vegas affirmed TripleTree’s perspective that these two sectors represent an appealing area for healthcare investors – resulting from the pipeline of new specialty drugs, the higher spend involved, and the opportunity to create efficiencies that improve both the margin profiles of specialty pharmacies while improving the outcomes associated with new specialty drugs. We look forward to our continued market interactions – and we are already looking forward to AXS24.