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Investing in the future

Investing in the future

Investing in improving patient health worldwide is Janssen's priority. We are at a pivotal moment in the history of medicine. It is now possible to prevent, control and even cure diseases that were once seriously debilitating or even fatal. And there is more progress to come. That is why we continue to invest heavily in discovering and developing transformational drugs for patients facing some of the world's most challenging diseases.

The medical challenges of today are much more complex than ever before. We need more investment and collaboration to find answers to today's toughest health challenges. We focus our research and development (R&D) on the prevention and treatment of diseases in medical areas where we can have the most meaningful impact. This requires investment in risky and costly research.

Long road and high investment

The development of a new drug for patients includes several stages of research conducted over many years, and involves significant costs and financial risk. Developing a medicine and obtaining approval from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), for example, usually takes 10–15 years and costs between $157 million and $2 billion.

Increase in R&D investment

In 2019, Janssen increased its investment in research and development worldwide to more than $8.8 billion; this amount represents a significant proportion of Johnson & Johnson's total investment during 2019 of $11.4 billion. Our investment enables us to discover, test and develop new drugs, and to demonstrate the effectiveness and safety of these new drugs. These investments have enabled us to develop more than 100 drug candidates.

Track record in new drugs

In the past seven years (2014–2020), the FDA has approved a total of eight new Janssen drugs. Seven of these eight drugs have been given a priority review by the FDA. A priority review is an accelerated review program reserved for products that treat a serious condition and can provide a significant improvement for patients in terms of safety and/or effectiveness. During the same period, we received ten "FDA Fast Track Designations." This means that the review of drugs to treat serious conditions and fill unmet medical needs is accelerated.

Largest R&D investor

We are one of the largest research and development (R&D) investors worldwide across all sectors. In 2019, Janssen in Belgium invested 1.54 billion euro in the research and development of new drugs and technologies for urgent, as yet unresolved medical needs. This makes Janssen the largest private investor in R&D in Belgium. Our research and development is currently focused on the following medical areas: cardiovascular & metabolism, immunology, infectious diseases and vaccines, neuroscience, oncology and pulmonary hypertension. We also make efforts to improve both the effectiveness and efficiency of research and development by investing in modern data science and by working with patients and other partners across the healthcare system.

Non-R&D investment

In Belgium, we also invest in innovative manufacturing technology. With new, groundbreaking continuous manufacturing technology, representing an investment of 21 million euro, we can make our drugs available more quickly and we can respond more effectively to the demand for important new drugs.

We also invested 42.8 million euro in a new, bigger laboratory harnessing the latest technologies. The LION project, which stands for Labs In One Network, includes a new lab for performing quality tests on new drugs, testing the release of active ingredients, the stability and the development of the best routes of administration for them.

Ecology is also an investment pillar

We also invested another 40 million euro in a new heating network. With the aid of deep geothermal drilling, we will be able to use geothermal energy. We are the first private player in Belgium to invest in environmentally friendly heating using deep geothermal energy.

With continuous investment in Janssen in Belgium we are consolidating our position within the global Johnson & Johnson group.

Kris Sterkens, Managing Director of Janssen Belgium