Management Consulting Services

Healthcare, Clinical Development and Biopharmaceutical Industry Insight

I've worked for over 20 years in clinical research and development, of which over 17 years directly in business-to-business dealing, primarily in the biopharmaceutical industry, across the UK, Switzerland, Canada, and the US. I help companies with managing strategic business opportunities in bioscience and healthcare.

Deal Strategy, Structure and Negotiation, Contracting, and (Re)Negotiation

The negotiation of a business deal begins with the earliest verbal discussions and personal relationships, but must end with a well-drafted contract. The best deals and contracts are drafted and written by experts who have been involved in leading negotiations from the first rough mention of terms to the final touches. Frequently, one party to a contract will involve their operations staff in one stage, their legal counsel in another, and junior paralegal/contracts staff in the critical final stages. I act as a single point of contact representing your interests—liaising with operational project management, technical and scientific leads, legal counsel, and executives.

I have personally led negotiations end-to-end for hundreds of deals and their contracts, with a combined value of over $700 million, in a number of global jurisdictions (applicable law including e.g. Swiss, US, UK, Canadian). I lead and facilitate negotiations direct with the other party, whether they are vendors, joint venturers, licensors or licensees, contract research organisations, pharmaceutical sponsors, employers, employees, goverment, or legal counsel.

For your deal and contract documents already near final, I offer a quick sanity check or a full redline review, importantly from a commercial perspective first, as well as legal. I will work directly with your internal or external legal counsel to save time and legal fees by drafting contract language and accompanying notes in the manner lawyers prefer. Again, my reviews are not limited to legal terms but are equally focused on commercial, economic and business terms—aspects that can fall outside of a lawyer's expertise.

Outsourcing and Vendor Selection

I specialise in strategic outsourcing of services, technology, and business processes. I can lead or assist in the outsourcing of your complex project or functional-service-provider needs, having developed strategies and run competitions for niche and full-service vendors for hundreds of projects and clinical trials for top-five blue-chip pharmaceutical companies.

For insight into the current practices of biopharma companies globally, I rely on my relationships with key contacts throughout the industry community in Europe and North America, including my seat for 2 years on the Committee of the UK-headquartered Pharmaceutical Contract Management Group and regular speaking and chairing engagements at outsourcing conferences.

Sales Strategy, Business Development, and Lead-Generation

Before leading the selection and management of vendors, partners, and academic collaborators for large pharma and biotech/virtual pharma, I managed proposals, sales, and contracts for a number of vendor companies providing contract technical services. Through my experience selling complex services to clients, and my relationships throughout the outsourced technology and service sector, I can advise on your sales strategy and market approach, whether you are a seasoned vendor, or a technology/service provider looking to make your first steps into the market.

Negotiation and Facilitation

The most well-considered sales strategy, or most technically advanced service offering, is of little use without a firm, trust-based relationship with your counterparty and a strong negotiator to develop and finalise contract and business terms. Retaining an agent can be a considerable advantage in negotiating with third parties, by reducing emotion and encouraging transparency.


My personal style is above all a people-focused and relationship-based approach, emphasising transparency, in-person one-on-one meetings and one-on-one telephone, but employing strong writing and editorial technique when corresponding or drafting documents. For many years I rejected negotiation training or theory, believing that natural people and relationship skills cannot be taught; but then I discovered an affinity with Stuart Diamond and his manual Getting More. My approach is harmonious with Prof. Diamond's and emphasises transparency and a focus on the other individual.

A sample of my writing on topics related to partnering, contracts, and outsourcing is this Contract Pharma paper on thorny inflation and currency-exchange issues.


You can view my capsule career history on my LinkedIn page.
Get in touch with me at your convenience at the below details to discuss opportunities for collaboration: I am happy to offer extensive information and strategic discussion prior to being formally engaged.


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Samuel Mercer Consulting
Canada registered business number 80752 7437 BC0001
2218 Bowker Avenue
Victoria, BC, V8R 2E4, Canada

Contents © Samuel Mercer 2014, 2015, 2017