The Top 5 Best Selling Global Pharmaceutical Drug Companies 2008

Global Sales Percent Change R&D Spending Best Selling Drug 2008
(New York, USA)
$44.2 billion - 0.5% $7.9 billion Lipitor
($12.4 billion)
(Brentford, England)
$43.0 billion 11.2% $5.2 billion Seretide/Advair
($6.0 billion)
(Paris, France)
$38.7 billion 4.8% $6.5 billion Lovenox
($3.9 billion)
(Basel, Switzerland)
$36.0 billion 10.7% $7.2 billion Diovan/Co-Diovan
($5.7 billion)
(London, England)
$31.6 billion 10.1% $5.1 billion Nexium
($5.2 billion)
Sources:  Pharm exec report 2009: The Pharm Exec 50
List Notes: Sales are global sales and are in US dollars for the year 2008. Percent change is from the year 2007.
  1. Lipitor is a cholesterol-lowering medication that blocks the production of cholesterol in the body. Lipitor reduces low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and total cholesterol in the blood.
  2. Advair is used in inhalers to prevent asthma attacks. It is also used to prevent flare-ups or worsening of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease associated with chronic bronchitis and/or emphysema.
  3. Lovenox is a blood thinner or anticoagulant. Lovenox prevents the formation of blood clots and is the most commonly used initial medication in the management of deep venous thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary emboli. It is also used to prevent harmful blood clots from forming in the arteries of the heart during episodes of chest pain and heart attacks.
  4. Diovan is used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension) or heart failure. It is also used to reduce the risk of death after a heart attack.
  5. Nexium is used to decreases the amount of acid produced in the stomach. It is also used to treat symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease and other conditions involving excessive stomach acid such as Zollinger-Ellison syndrome.
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