Year: 2013-14

Company: Eli Lilly & Co.

Liaison(s): Eyas Abu-Raddad, Paul Owens, Liean Schenck

Chorus is an autonomous group within Eli Lilly and Company that functions to determine the proofof- concept of new clinical development molecules (assets) quickly, efficiently, and at low cost. Chorus was initially developed by Lilly as part of a fast-to-fail approach for secondary internal assets. It was hoped that this approach would reduce the cost of failed molecules yet accelerate the development of molecules with a successful proof-of-concept outcome by rapidly delivering them to the internal Lilly pipeline. Since its inception Chorus additionally developed assets from sources outside of Lilly—specifically assets funded directly or indirectly by Lilly’s Capital Funds Strategy. These assets, selected for development by Chorus, were from therapeutic areas that matched those of Lilly’s portfolio. During the transition from developing “internal only” Lilly assets to developing assets from outside sources, some confusion has developed about the role of Chorus within Lilly. Simultaneously, the value of Chorus to external customers and Lilly’s internal research engine has changed. Chorus has no desire to become a solely contract research organization which develops assets on a fee for service basis. Consequently, Chorus needed to identify their core capabilities and clarify their value to both their internal Lilly R&D as well as their external customers. Finally, Chorus wished to identify areas of research which were of particular value to their customers. To support Chorus’ goals, the KGI team was tasked with interviewing and surveying Chorus team members to identify the internal perceptions of their key capabilities as well as the areas they need to improve. Additionally, the team interviewed current and potential customers to crystallize their view of Chorus’ strengths and weaknesses, the value of their capabilities, and to compare the internal and external customer perceptions of Chorus’ capabilities. After generating a complete list of capabilities, current and potential customers were segmented based on their motivation and their needs in seeking development activities from Chorus. Lastly, the team analyzed the competitive landscape, and made recommendations for improving the communication of Chorus’ value to current and potential customers.