Coming to grips

Coming to grips

Last night the NFL season officially began with the defending Superbowl champion Denver Broncos defeating their Superbowl opponent from last February the Carolina Panthers. While the Broncos did win the game, this team is missing their Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning. Yet, Peyton Manning isn’t the only major star who will be missing from the sidelines this year as several key players have decided it’s time to move on. Basically the NFL is coming to grips with the fact that the players who were once well known by both hard core and casual fans are no longer playing and new stars need to emerge.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for many of the legacy franchises in diabetes. As we move into the final quarter of 2016 many of these companies are planning for next year. Outlining strategy, tactics and budgets. Yet, from what we are hearing it has yet to dawn on several of these franchises this wacky world is in the midst of a major transformation. That the old way of doing business just won’t work anymore. That if they don’t change and change quickly these once well-known franchises will be run over by well-resourced competitors who are not chained to the past.

While there are several issues facing these legacy franchises the biggest stumbling block is actually coming to grips with reality. Accepting the fact that the old way of doing business just won’t work. That if they are to survive it can no longer be business as usual.

Take a look for example at the conventional glucose monitoring market, a market which is going to experience a slow and very painful demise. It wasn’t that long ago that this was a $6 billion market, which now is a $4 billion market, which in 5 years will be a $1 billion market. This trend is not just because of the emergence of continuous glucose monitoring systems, systems which will soon become the standard. Nor can this markets ills be directly attributed to competitive bidding. The simple fact is these factors and more are putting the nails in the BGM coffin.

The insulin pump market is not that far behind the BGM market. Nor is the diabetes drug market. And while it isn’t even a true market yet interconnected diabetes management system (IDMS), has all the earmarks for following this path.

Now to be fair it’s not easy to sit in a conference room, see a franchise generating billions in revenue and some nice albeit lower margins and say: “Hey let’s blow up this franchise and start over.” It’s not easy to put pen to paper and say; “It’s time to go big ladies and gentlemen, time to spend some serious bucks so we can compete in the future. And oh by the way there is no certainty that after we spend these big bucks we’ll be successful.”

Honestly we feel for many of these legacy companies and the difficult choices they must make. However, as Momma Kliff was fond of saying; “This is why you make the big bucks. It’s time to start earning those fat salaries you make.”

Simply put its time for these legacy companies to come to grips with reality. To say goodbye to the past and hello to the future.  For if they continue to ignore what’s happening their very survival is at stake. Then they will experience something else Momma Kliff used to say; “It’s one thing to be caught in a situation you can do nothing about, that you have no control over. Yet, it’s quite another when you have the chance to do something and don’t do it just because change is hard. So don’t come crying to me when things don’t work because you were too afraid to change.”