How Ozempic Maker Novo Nordisk’s Very Danish Capitalism Fueled Its Success, and Its Stumbles

November 7, 2023

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(Wall Street Journal) – For its entire 100-year existence, the pharmaceutical manufacturer has stayed linked to its home country due to a particular Danish brand of capitalism. Like almost half of the country’s 28 largest companies, including global players like brewer Carlsberg, shipping giant Maersk and toy maker Lego, Novo is controlled by a foundation. That has kept it in Danish hands even as competing medical and life-sciences firms merged or were acquired by capital-investment funds.

That structure has supported an altruistic mission to fund research in life sciences, but also put constraints on the company’s growth that are evident now as it struggles to keep up with demand for drugs such as Ozempic and Wegovy. (Read more)