1.5 Innovation

Innovation is at the heart of UCB’s strategy, actions, culture and investments.

By investing more than 20% of its revenue in R&D over the last years, UCB is one the biggest investors in innovation in Europe in the Pharmaceutical Industry, and in the global leading group as far as innovation investment per employee is concerned. We promote innovative risk taking and entrepreneurship, challenge and transparence, which are essential components of a culture of innovation.

The R&D pipeline progress, the continuous increase of UCB-generated publications in high level scientific journals and our ability to attract top scientific talents are the fruits of our innovation focus.

UCB is aiming at improving the life of patients, helping them to live the life they want to. We are focusing our strategy and resources on discovering, developing and commercializing innovative solutions for the patients we serve.

UCB is truly a very inspiring work place constantly evolving in terms of organization and operating model to ultimately provide greater value to the patients; I feel fortunate to be part of this journey

Élisabeth, UCB


Progress on digital technologies and artificial intelligence (AI) are likely to accelerate an integration of different processes in the healthcare system and medical solutions, and to reduce the access to service gap for patients. Patients are quickly embracing digital health care access and seek care over the internet.

UCB monitors the types of, sometimes disruptive, transformations and new data accessibility of digital technologies, especially in the domain of drug discovery, clinical read-outs (biosensors) and medical devices, in order to improve access, objectively understand the patient journeys and shorten time to bring new solutions to the market, among others. Anticipating and appreciating change, and implementing change management will be key for UCB.

AI commands agility and the need for new skills within UCB’s workforce. As new and innovative pathways will become the norm in manufacturing, supply chain, drug development, regulatory and safety, and support and oversight functions, we must be ready to take advantage.

Different departments are engaged in AI initiatives and ecosystem scouting, and as the patient is at the heart of UCB’s Patient Value Strategy, emphasis is on improving the patients journey and shortening the time required to develop new medicines. Some examples are the myUCB platform for patient reported outcomes and enhanced patient experience participating in clinical studies or the deep machine learning to interpret images of new medical conditions, e.g., Bonebot.

UCB is prepared to embrace the changes created by external and internal innovative digital technology platforms, adapt operating models and ensure that impact on patient’s value can be adequately measured and reported.