Market Report; 223 Pages
Published September 2020
From the early 1900s through the mid-2000s, the global cord blood banking industry expanded rapidly, with companies opening for business in all major markets worldwide. From approximately 2005 to 2010, the market reached saturation and stabilized. Then, from 2010 to 2020, the market began to aggressively consolidate. This has created both serious threats and unique opportunities within the industry.
Serious threats to the industry include low rates of utilization for stored cord blood, expensive cord blood transplantation procedures, difficulty educating obstetricians about cellular therapies, and an increasing trend toward industry consolidation. There are also emerging opportunities for the industry, such as accelerated regulatory pathways for cell therapies in leading healthcare markets worldwide and expanding applications for cell-based therapies. In particular, MSCs from cord tissue (and other sources) are showing intriguing promise in the treatment and management of COVID-19.
Cord Blood Industry Trends
Furthermore, new themes are impacting the industry, including the pairing of stem cell storage services with genetic and genomic testing services, as well as reproductive health services. Cord blood banks are diversifying into new types of stem cell storage, including umbilical cord tissue storage, placental blood and tissue, amniotic fluid and tissue, and dental pulp. Cord blood banks are also investigating means of becoming integrated therapeutic companies.
With hundreds of companies offering cord blood banking services worldwide, maturation of the market means that each company is fighting harder for market share.
Growing numbers of investors are also entering the marketplace, with M&A activity accelerating in the U.S. and abroad. Holding companies are emerging as a global theme, allowing for increased operational efficiency and economy of scale. Cryoholdco has established itself as the market leader within Latin America. Created in 2015, Cryoholdco is a holding company that will control nearly 270,000 stem cell units by the end of 2020. It now owns a half dozen cord blood banks, as well as a dental stem cell storage company.
Globally, networks of cord blood banks have become commonplace, with Sanpower Group establishing its dominance in Asia. Although Sanpower has been quiet about its operations, it holds 4 licenses out of only 7 issued provincial-level cord blood bank licenses in China. It has reserved over 900,000 cord blood samples in China, and its reserves amount to over 1.2 million units when Cordlife’ reserves within Southeast Asian countries are included. This positions Sanpower Group and its subsidiary Nanjing Cenbest as the world’s largest cord blood banking operator not only in China and Southeast Asia, but in the world.
The number of cord blood banks in Europe has dropped by more than one-third over the past ten years, from approximately 150 to under 100. The industry leaders in this market segment include FamiCord Group, who has executed a dozen M&A transactions, and Vita34, who has executed approximately a half dozen. Stemlab, the largest cord blood bank in Portugal, also executed three acquisition deals prior to being acquired by FamiCord. FamiCord is now the leading stem cell bank in Europe and one of the largest worldwide.
Cord Blood Expansion Technologies
Because cord blood utilization is largely limited to use in pediatric patients, growing investment is flowing into ex vivo cord blood expansion technologies. If successful, this technology could greatly expand the market potential for cord blood, encouraging its use within new markets, such as regenerative medicine, aging, and augmented immunity.
Key strategies being explored for this purpose include:
- Nicotinamide-mediated (NAM) expansion
- Notch ligand
- Enforced fucosylation
Currently, Gamida Cell, Nohla Therapeutics, Excellthera, and Magenta Therapeutics have ex vivo cord blood expansion products proceeding through clinical trials. Growing numbers of investors have also entered the cord blood banking marketplace, led by groups such as GI Partners, ABS Capital Partners & HLM Management, KKR & Company, Bay City Capital, GTCR, LLC, and Excalibur.
Cord Blood Banking by Region
Within the United States, most of the market share is controlled by three major players: Cord Blood Registry (CBR), Cryo-Cell and ViaCord. CBR has been traded twice, once in 2015 to AMAG Pharmaceuticals for $700 million and again in 2018 to GI Partners for $530 million. CBR also bought Natera’s Evercord Cord Blood Banking business in September 2019. In total, CBR controls over 900,000 cord blood and tissue samples, making it one of the largest cord blood banks worldwide.
In China, the government controls the industry by authorizing only one cord blood bank to operate within each province, and official government support, authorization, and permits are required. Importantly, the Chinese government announced in late 2019 that it will be issuing new licenses for the first time, expanding from the current 7 licensed regions for cord blood banking to up to 19 regions, including Beijing.
In Italy and France, it is illegal to privately store one’s cord blood, which has fully eliminated the potential for a private market to exist within the region. In Ecuador, the government created he first public cord blood bank and instituted laws such that private cord blood banks cannot approach women about private cord blood banking options during the first six months of pregnancy. This created a crisis for the private banks, forcing most out of business.
Recently, India’s Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) restricted commercial banking of stem cells from most biological materials, including cord tissue, placenta, and dental pulp stem cells—leaving only umbilical cord blood banking as “permitted and licensed” within the country.
While market factors vary by geography, it is crucial to have a global understanding of the industry, because research advances, clinical trial findings, and technology advances do not know international boundaries. The cord blood market is global in nature and understanding dynamics within your region is not sufficient for making strategic, informed, and profitable decisions.
Cord Blood Report Highlights
The report presents the number of cord blood units stored in inventory by the largest cord blood banks worldwide and the number of cord blood units (CBUs) released by registries across the world for hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) transplantation. Although cord blood is now used to treat more than 80 different diseases, this number could substantially expand if applications related to regenerative medicine start receiving approvals in major healthcare markets worldwide.
Overall, the report provides the reader with the following details and answers the following questions:
- Number of cord blood units cryopreserved in public and private cord blood banks globally
- Number of hematopoietic stem cell transplants (HSCTs) globally using cord blood cells
- Utilization of cord blood cells in clinical trials for developing regenerative medicines
- The decline of the utilization of cord blood cells in HSC transplantations since 2005
- Emerging technologies to influence financial sustainability of public cord blood banks
- The future scope for companion products from cord blood
- The changing landscape of cord blood cell banking market
- Extension of services by cord blood banks
- Types of cord blood banks
- Economic model of public cord blood banks
- Cost analysis for public cord blood banks
- Economic model of private cord blood banks
- Cost analysis for private cord blood banks
- Profit margins for private cord blood banks
- Pricing for processing and storage in private banks
- Rate per cord blood unit in the U.S. and Europe
- Indications for the use of cord blood-derived HSCs for transplantations
- Diseases targeted by cord blood-derived MSCs in regenerative medicine
- Cord blood processing technologies
- Number of clinical trials, number of published scientific papers and NIH funding for cord blood research
- Transplantation data from different cord blood registries
Key questions answered in this report are:
- What are the strategies being considered for improving the financial stability of public cord blood banks?
- What are the companion products proposed to be developed from cord blood?
- How much is being spent for processing and storing a unit of cord blood?
- How much does a unit of cryopreserved cord blood unit fetch on release?
- Why do most public cord blood banks incur a loss?
- What is the net profit margin for a private cord blood bank?
- What are the prices for processing and storage of cord blood in private cord blood banks?
- What are the rates per cord blood units in the U.S. and Europe?
- What are the revenues from cord blood sales for major cord blood banks?
- Which are the different accreditation systems for cord blood banks?
- What are the comparative merits of the various cord blood processing technologies?
- What is to be done to increase the rate of utilization of cord blood cells in transplantations?
- Which TNC counts are preferred for transplantation?
- What is the number of registered clinical trials using cord blood and cord tissue?
- How many clinical trials are involved in studying the expansion of cord blood cells in the laboratory?
- How many matching and mismatching transplantations using cord blood units are performed on an annual basis?
- What is the share of cord blood cells used for transplantation from 2000 to 2020?
- What is the likelihood of finding a matching allogeneic cord blood unit by ethnicity?
- Which are the top ten countries for donating cord blood?
- What are the diseases targeted by cord blood-derived MSCs in clinical trials?
View Table of Contents: Global Cord Blood Industry Report, 2020
With an online readership of nearly one million viewers per year, BioInformant is a U.S. market research firm with 15 years of experience. As the first and only market research firm to specialize in the stem cell industry, BioInformant research has been cited by the Wall Street Journal, Xconomy, and Vogue Magazine. Headquartered in Washington, DC, BioInformant is strategically positioned to be near the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the U.S. FDA, the Maryland Biotech Corridor, and policy makers on Capital Hill.
Get immediate access to this report as a PDF download, with printing rights allowed.