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DBL%20Hendrix%20small.png College chemistry, 1983

Derek Lowe The 2002 Model

Dbl%20new%20portrait%20B%26W.png After 10 years of blogging. . .

Derek Lowe, an Arkansan by birth, got his BA from Hendrix College and his PhD in organic chemistry from Duke before spending time in Germany on a Humboldt Fellowship on his post-doc. He's worked for several major pharmaceutical companies since 1989 on drug discovery projects against schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, diabetes, osteoporosis and other diseases. To contact Derek email him directly: Twitter: Dereklowe

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June 23, 2009

One. . .Billion. . .Dollars!

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Posted by Derek

The In Vivo Blog has a piece that everyone who follows small-company press releases should read. "When Is a Billion Dollars Not a Billion Dollars?", they ask. And the answer is, of course, when someone's press-releasing it. Read the whole thing, but here's the short form: when someone says "We just signed a deal worth a billion dollars!", too often they're leaving out the rest of the sentence. It's supposed to continue like this: ". . .if every single thing goes perfectly and all our drugs work and become the biggest successes they possibly can." And since that happens, like, all the flippin' time, well. . .

Comments (5) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: Business and Markets | Drug Development


1. SP on June 23, 2009 7:38 AM writes...

We called these biobucks at my last place, and they were actually included in milestones- We want to sign deals this year for $100M in biobucks and $10M in real money, etc.

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2. Hap on June 23, 2009 11:27 AM writes...

I'm assuming the same investors who believe the dollar amounts in these press releases are the target audience for the signs I see on roadsides saying "Make CEO income from your home!", and used to be the target audience for late-night infomercials explaining how much money you could make investing in real estate.

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3. Sili on June 23, 2009 11:39 AM writes...

Same problem when drug raids are reported. As if poor Afghan farmers will ever see the street value of pure heroin.

But it sounds better to say 50 million pounds than a coupla bucket of poppies.

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4. Anonymous BMS Researcher on June 23, 2009 9:46 PM writes...

Software and media companies play similar games with funny money when estimating the cost of piracy.

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5. stuff on June 24, 2009 6:16 AM writes...

The bigger the headline figure... the bigger the splash... they got coverage on Reuters, Telegraph, Times, Guardian, Independent. If as Ep Vantage has suggested on InVivo blog comments that they got £5m, I doubt it would have got any coverage

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