Presentations made painless

Company > Exelixis: Business Model, SWOT Analysis, and Competitors 2023

Exelixis: Business Model, SWOT Analysis, and Competitors 2023

Published: May 01, 2023

Inside This Article


    In this blog article, we will delve into the business model, conduct a SWOT analysis, and explore the competitive landscape of Exelixis, a prominent biopharmaceutical company. Exelixis has gained significant recognition in the industry for its innovative therapies targeting cancer and other serious diseases. By analyzing its business model, we can understand how the company operates and generates revenue. Additionally, a SWOT analysis will provide insights into Exelixis' strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Lastly, we will examine its competitors and assess the company's position in the market as we project ahead to 2023.

    What You Will Learn:

    • Who owns Exelixis and the significance of ownership in a company's success and direction.
    • The mission statement of Exelixis and how it guides their strategic decisions and operations.
    • The various revenue streams and business strategies that Exelixis employs to generate income.
    • An in-depth explanation of Exelixis' Business Model Canvas and how it helps them achieve their goals.
    • The key competitors of Exelixis and their impact on the company's market position.
    • A comprehensive SWOT analysis of Exelixis, highlighting their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats for a better understanding of their overall business outlook.

    Who owns Exelixis?

    Major Institutional Ownership

    Exelixis, a biotechnology company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative therapies, has attracted significant attention and investment from major institutional shareholders. These institutional investors, including mutual funds, pension funds, and other investment firms, play a crucial role in shaping the ownership structure of the company.

    One of the largest institutional shareholders of Exelixis is Vanguard Group, a renowned investment management company. As of the latest available data, Vanguard Group holds a substantial stake in Exelixis, owning approximately 8.5% of the company's outstanding shares. With its extensive portfolio and diverse range of clients, Vanguard's investment in Exelixis demonstrates the company's confidence in the biotech firm's potential for growth and success.

    BlackRock, another prominent institutional investor, also holds a significant position in Exelixis. With a stake of around 7.6%, BlackRock's investment signals its belief in the long-term prospects of the company. As one of the world's largest asset management firms, BlackRock's involvement in Exelixis further enhances the biotech company's visibility and credibility in the financial markets.

    Insider Ownership

    In addition to major institutional shareholders, Exelixis also boasts a notable level of insider ownership. Insider ownership refers to shares held by individuals closely associated with the company, such as executives, directors, and employees. This form of ownership aligns the interests of insiders with those of the shareholders, as insiders have a direct stake in the company's success.

    Notably, Michael Morrissey, the CEO of Exelixis, holds a significant number of shares in the company. As a co-founder and long-standing executive, his ownership stake underscores his commitment to the company's growth and his confidence in its future prospects. Such insider ownership can be seen as a positive sign for investors, as it suggests that the management team is personally invested in the company's success.

    Moreover, other key executives and board members, including members of the scientific and medical teams, also hold substantial ownership positions in Exelixis. This collective insider ownership reinforces the notion that those responsible for leading and guiding the company are heavily invested in its performance, which can instill trust and confidence in potential investors.

    Retail Investors

    Apart from institutional and insider ownership, Exelixis also enjoys support from retail investors. Retail investors are individual investors who buy and sell securities, such as stocks, through brokerage accounts or investment platforms. While their individual holdings may be relatively small compared to institutional investors, their cumulative ownership can still have a significant impact on the company's shareholder base.

    Exelixis has a strong retail investor following, with numerous individual shareholders supporting the biotech company. These retail investors are often attracted to Exelixis due to its promising product pipeline, potential for future growth, and the opportunity to be part of the healthcare industry's advancements. Their participation in the ownership of Exelixis contributes to the overall shareholder diversity and can add stability and liquidity to the stock.

    In conclusion, Exelixis boasts a diverse ownership structure, with major institutional investors, insiders, and retail investors all having a stake in the company. The involvement of major institutional shareholders such as Vanguard Group and BlackRock, along with the substantial insider ownership led by CEO Michael Morrissey, highlights the confidence and commitment of key players in Exelixis. Furthermore, the support from retail investors reinforces the broad interest and belief in the company's potential. Overall, this ownership structure reflects a strong foundation for Exelixis as it continues its pursuit of innovative therapies and growth in the biotech industry.

    What is the mission statement of Exelixis?

    The Mission Statement of Exelixis: Advancing Medicines for the Benefit of Patients

    Exelixis, a biopharmaceutical company headquartered in California, is driven by a clear and powerful mission statement. Their mission is to advance medicines to improve the lives of patients suffering from serious diseases. With a strong focus on discovering, developing, and commercializing innovative therapies, Exelixis aims to make a meaningful difference in the lives of patients and their families.

    Exelixis recognizes the urgent need for effective treatments for various challenging health conditions, especially those with limited treatment options. The company is committed to leveraging its expertise in biology, chemistry, and clinical development to deliver transformative therapies that address unmet medical needs.

    Patient-Centric Approach

    At the heart of Exelixis' mission statement is a patient-centric approach. The company understands the profound impact that diseases can have on individuals and their loved ones. Therefore, they are dedicated to developing therapies that not only alleviate symptoms but also extend and improve the quality of life.

    Exelixis actively collaborates with patients, healthcare professionals, and advocacy organizations to understand the unique challenges faced by patients and to ensure that their needs are at the forefront of their research and development efforts. By engaging with the patient community, Exelixis can gain valuable insights and perspectives, ultimately guiding their scientific endeavors towards developing impactful treatments.

    Innovation and Scientific Excellence

    To fulfill their mission, Exelixis places a strong emphasis on innovation and scientific excellence. The company invests heavily in research and development to drive discoveries that have the potential to revolutionize patient care. Exelixis fosters a culture of collaboration, encouraging its scientists and researchers to think creatively, explore new avenues, and push the boundaries of medical science.

    By harnessing cutting-edge technologies and employing rigorous scientific methodologies, Exelixis endeavors to bring forth novel treatment options that have the potential to transform healthcare landscapes. Through their commitment to scientific excellence, the company strives to develop therapies that are not only effective but also safe and well-tolerated by patients.

    Impacting Global Health

    Exelixis recognizes that their mission extends beyond the borders of any one country or region. They acknowledge the global nature of healthcare challenges and aim to make a positive impact on a global scale. By developing innovative medicines, Exelixis seeks to contribute to the advancement of healthcare worldwide and provide hope to patients in need, regardless of their geographical location.

    In pursuit of their mission, Exelixis actively collaborates with international partners, regulatory authorities, and healthcare providers to ensure that their therapies reach patients in a timely manner. The company adheres to the highest ethical and regulatory standards, working diligently to expedite the development and approval of their innovative medicines across different jurisdictions.


    Exelixis is driven by a mission statement that embodies their dedication to advancing medicines for the benefit of patients. Through their patient-centric approach, commitment to innovation and scientific excellence, and a focus on global health impact, Exelixis strives to improve the lives of individuals grappling with serious diseases. By staying true to their mission, Exelixis aims to create a lasting positive legacy in the field of medicine and make a difference in the lives of countless patients and their families.

    How does Exelixis make money?

    Revenue Streams

    Exelixis, a biopharmaceutical company, generates its revenue through various streams. These include:

    1. Product Sales

    Exelixis primarily earns revenue through the sale of its flagship product, Cabometyx. Cabometyx is an oral medication approved for the treatment of various advanced cancers, such as renal cell carcinoma and hepatocellular carcinoma. As a targeted therapy, Cabometyx has demonstrated significant efficacy, making it a preferred choice for oncologists and patients alike. The company's strong sales force actively promotes Cabometyx to healthcare providers, ensuring a steady revenue stream from product sales.

    2. Licensing Agreements

    Another significant revenue source for Exelixis is licensing agreements. The company has strategically entered into collaborations with pharmaceutical companies worldwide, granting them exclusive rights to develop and commercialize certain Exelixis products in specific regions or indications. These partnerships often involve upfront payments, milestone payments tied to development or regulatory achievements, as well as royalties on net sales of licensed products. By leveraging these licensing agreements, Exelixis can tap into additional revenue streams while expanding its global reach.

    3. Research and Development Collaborations

    Exelixis actively engages in research and development collaborations with both academic institutions and other pharmaceutical companies. Through these collaborations, the company combines its expertise in oncology with external resources to develop innovative therapies and expand its product pipeline. These partnerships often involve joint funding, sharing of intellectual property, and even co-development efforts. By diversifying its research and development activities, Exelixis not only accelerates the discovery of potential breakthroughs but also generates revenue through collaboration agreements.

    4. Royalties and Milestone Payments

    Exelixis also benefits from royalties and milestone payments from partners who have licensed their intellectual property. As a result of the company's extensive portfolio of patents and intellectual property, other pharmaceutical companies may pay royalties for using Exelixis' technology or compounds in their own drug development efforts. Additionally, Exelixis receives milestone payments when certain predefined milestones, such as successful clinical trial outcomes or regulatory approvals, are achieved by their partners. These royalties and milestone payments contribute to Exelixis' overall revenue stream and provide a steady income source.

    In conclusion, Exelixis generates revenue through various channels, including product sales, licensing agreements, research and development collaborations, as well as royalties and milestone payments. By leveraging these revenue streams, the company not only sustains its financial growth but also continues to advance its mission of discovering and developing innovative therapies to improve the lives of cancer patients.

    Exelixis Business Model Canvas Explained

    What is the Business Model Canvas?

    The Business Model Canvas is a strategic management tool that provides a visual representation of a company's business model. It consists of nine key building blocks that help analyze and understand the various aspects of a business. These building blocks are categorized into four main areas: customer, infrastructure, offering, and financial.

    The Nine Building Blocks

    1. Customer Segments: This block defines the specific groups of customers that a company aims to target. Exelixis, a biopharmaceutical company, focuses on the healthcare industry and primarily targets patients with advanced cancers.

    2. Value Proposition: The value proposition refers to the unique combination of products, services, and benefits that a company offers to its customers. Exelixis' value proposition lies in its innovative and effective cancer treatments, which have the potential to improve patients' quality of life and survival rates.

    3. Channels: The channels block describes the different ways a company communicates with, reaches, and delivers its value proposition to its customers. Exelixis primarily uses a combination of direct sales teams, partnerships with healthcare providers, and digital marketing strategies to reach oncologists and healthcare professionals.

    4. Customer Relationships: This block outlines the types of relationships a company establishes and maintains with its customers. For Exelixis, building strong relationships with healthcare professionals is crucial. This involves providing educational resources, clinical trial support, and ongoing communication to ensure physicians have the necessary information to prescribe Exelixis' treatments.

    5. Revenue Streams: The revenue streams block identifies the various sources of income for a company. Exelixis generates revenue through the sale of its cancer treatments, which are typically reimbursed by insurance companies or government healthcare programs.

    6. Key Activities: This block encompasses the primary actions a company must perform to deliver its value proposition and achieve its business objectives. Exelixis focuses on research and development (R&D), clinical trials, regulatory compliance, manufacturing, and marketing activities to develop and commercialize its cancer treatments.

    7. Key Resources: The key resources block highlights the assets, capabilities, and partnerships that are essential for a company to operate effectively. Exelixis relies on its team of scientists, clinical research experts, manufacturing facilities, patents, and collaborations with academic institutions and other biopharmaceutical companies to drive innovation and deliver high-quality treatments.

    8. Key Partnerships: This block identifies the external entities that a company collaborates with to leverage their resources, expertise, or distribution channels. Exelixis forms strategic partnerships with cancer research organizations, healthcare providers, and pharmaceutical companies to accelerate drug development, expand market reach, and enhance patient access to its treatments.

    9. Cost Structure: The cost structure block outlines the various costs incurred by a company to operate its business model successfully. Exelixis incurs expenses related to R&D, clinical trials, manufacturing, marketing, sales, and general administrative functions. These costs need to be carefully managed to ensure profitability and sustainability.


    By using the Business Model Canvas, Exelixis can gain a comprehensive understanding of its business model and identify areas for improvement or innovation. This tool helps the company align its activities, resources, and partnerships to deliver value to its customers and achieve its strategic objectives. Understanding Exelixis' business model through the lens of the Business Model Canvas provides valuable insights into how the company operates in the competitive biopharmaceutical industry.

    Which companies are the competitors of Exelixis?

    Overview of Exelixis

    Exelixis is a biotechnology company that focuses on developing and commercializing innovative medicines to treat cancer. With a strong emphasis on precision medicine, Exelixis has successfully developed and brought to market several FDA-approved therapies that have revolutionized cancer treatment.

    Competitors in the Pharmaceutical Industry

    Exelixis operates in a highly competitive landscape within the pharmaceutical industry. Several companies are vying for market share and striving to develop breakthrough treatments for various types of cancer. The following are some notable competitors of Exelixis:

    1. Pfizer Inc.

    Pfizer, a global pharmaceutical giant, is known for its extensive portfolio of oncology drugs. With a strong research and development pipeline, Pfizer boasts multiple FDA-approved cancer treatments and continues to invest in cutting-edge therapies. Notable drugs in Pfizer's oncology portfolio include Ibrance, Xalkori, and Inlyta.

    2. Merck & Co., Inc.

    Merck is another leading player in the oncology market, offering a range of innovative cancer therapies. Key products in Merck's portfolio include Keytruda, a blockbuster immunotherapy drug used to treat multiple types of cancer, and Lynparza, a targeted therapy for certain ovarian and breast cancers. Merck's robust pipeline suggests continued growth and competition in the oncology space.

    3. Bristol Myers Squibb

    Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS) is a renowned pharmaceutical company with a strong foothold in the oncology sector. BMS is known for its revolutionary immunotherapy drugs, such as Opdivo and Yervoy, which have significantly impacted the treatment of various cancers. The company's commitment to research and development ensures continued competition with Exelixis.

    4. Novartis AG

    Novartis is a global healthcare company that encompasses a diverse portfolio of pharmaceuticals, including oncology drugs. The company's oncology division offers targeted therapies, immunotherapies, and supportive care treatments for different types of cancer. Notable products from Novartis include Kisqali, Afinitor, and Tafinlar + Mekinist.


    Exelixis operates in a highly competitive landscape within the pharmaceutical industry, where several companies strive to develop groundbreaking cancer treatments. Competitors such as Pfizer, Merck & Co., Bristol Myers Squibb, and Novartis AG have established their presence in the oncology market with a range of FDA-approved therapies. These companies' ongoing research and development efforts ensure constant competition and drive innovation in the fight against cancer.

    Exelixis SWOT Analysis


    • Strong pipeline: Exelixis has a robust pipeline of innovative drugs, particularly in the field of oncology. The company has successfully developed and commercialized several cancer therapies, such as Cabometyx, which has shown promising results in treating renal cell carcinoma. This strong pipeline positions Exelixis well for future growth and revenue generation.

    • Established partnerships: Exelixis has formed strategic partnerships with leading pharmaceutical companies, such as Bristol-Myers Squibb and Ipsen, to co-develop and commercialize its drugs. These partnerships not only provide financial support but also enhance Exelixis' research and development capabilities, access to global markets, and potential for successful drug launches.

    • Market presence: Exelixis has established a strong market presence in the oncology space. The company's flagship product, Cabometyx, has gained significant market share and is considered a standard of care for certain cancer indications. Exelixis' reputation and brand recognition in the oncology community give it a competitive advantage in terms of physician adoption and patient trust.


    • Dependence on a single product: Despite having a strong pipeline, Exelixis heavily relies on the sales of Cabometyx for its revenue generation. This overreliance on a single product exposes the company to potential risks, such as patent expirations, competition from alternative therapies, or changes in reimbursement policies. Diversification of its product portfolio could mitigate this weakness and provide a more stable revenue stream.

    • Limited therapeutic areas: Exelixis primarily focuses on oncology, which narrows its scope in terms of addressing other diseases or medical conditions. While oncology presents a lucrative market, diversifying into other therapeutic areas could expand Exelixis' market opportunities and reduce its dependence on a single therapeutic category.


    • Expansion into international markets: Exelixis currently operates predominantly in the United States. However, there is a significant potential for expansion into international markets, where there is a growing demand for innovative cancer therapies. By leveraging its partnerships and establishing a global presence, Exelixis can tap into these markets and increase its patient reach and revenue potential.

    • Acquisitions and licensing agreements: Exelixis can explore opportunities for strategic acquisitions or licensing agreements to enhance its product portfolio and pipeline. By collaborating with or acquiring companies that have complementary technologies or drugs in development, Exelixis can accelerate its research and development efforts and bring new therapies to the market faster.


    • Competitive landscape: The pharmaceutical industry, especially the oncology sector, is highly competitive. Exelixis faces competition from well-established pharmaceutical companies, as well as emerging biotechnology firms. These competitors may have greater financial resources, larger sales forces, or more extensive product portfolios, which could pose challenges to Exelixis' market share and growth prospects.

    • Regulatory hurdles: The drug development and approval process is heavily regulated, and Exelixis must comply with various regulatory requirements to bring its therapies to market. Delays in regulatory approvals or changes in regulatory guidelines could impact the company's product launch timelines and revenue projections.

    • Pricing and reimbursement pressures: The rising cost of healthcare and increasing scrutiny on drug pricing and reimbursement present challenges for pharmaceutical companies. Exelixis may face pressure from payers, government agencies, and other stakeholders to justify the pricing of its drugs and demonstrate their cost-effectiveness. This could impact the company's profitability and market access if reimbursement rates are lower than anticipated.

    Key Takeaways

    • Exelixis is owned by a diverse group of institutional investors, with no single majority shareholder.
    • The mission statement of Exelixis is to "discover, develop and commercialize new medicines to improve the lives of patients with cancer and other serious diseases."
    • Exelixis makes money primarily through the sale of its approved drugs, including Cabometyx and Cometriq, which are used for the treatment of certain types of cancer.
    • Exelixis operates on a business model canvas that focuses on key activities such as research and development, clinical trials, marketing and sales, and partnerships.
    • Some of the main competitors of Exelixis in the field of cancer therapeutics include Bristol-Myers Squibb, Merck & Co., and Pfizer.

    SWOT Analysis:

    • Strengths:
      • Strong portfolio of approved drugs
      • Focus on research and development
      • Strategic partnerships with other pharmaceutical companies
    • Weaknesses:
      • Reliance on a limited number of drugs for revenue
      • Vulnerability to changes in regulations and patent expiration
    • Opportunities:
      • Expansion into new markets or indications
      • Potential for development of new drugs
    • Threats:
      • Intense competition from other pharmaceutical companies
      • Uncertainty in the regulatory environment


    In conclusion, Exelixis is a biopharmaceutical company that is publicly traded, meaning it is owned by its shareholders. The mission statement of Exelixis is to discover, develop, and commercialize new medicines that can improve the lives of patients suffering from cancer and other serious illnesses.

    Exelixis makes money primarily through the sales of its approved drugs, such as cabozantinib, as well as through collaborations and partnerships with other pharmaceutical companies. The company also generates revenue through royalties and milestone payments from its licensed products.

    The Exelixis Business Model Canvas provides a comprehensive overview of the company's key activities, resources, partners, and customer segments. It outlines the value proposition that Exelixis offers to its customers, which includes innovative and effective treatments for cancer.

    As for competitors, Exelixis faces competition from other biopharmaceutical companies that are also focused on developing and commercializing cancer therapies. Some notable competitors include Bristol Myers Squibb, Merck & Co., and Pfizer.

    In conducting a SWOT analysis of Exelixis, we can identify the company's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Exelixis has a strong portfolio of approved drugs and a robust pipeline of potential new treatments. However, the company faces challenges such as intense competition, potential regulatory hurdles, and the need for continued research and development efforts.

    Overall, Exelixis is a dynamic biopharmaceutical company with a clear mission, a solid business model, and a competitive position in the market. With its focus on developing innovative cancer therapies, Exelixis is well-positioned to continue making significant contributions to the field of medicine.


    Why is SWOT analysis outdated?

    SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) is not necessarily outdated, but it has certain limitations that make it less effective in today's rapidly changing business environment. Here are a few reasons why SWOT analysis may be considered outdated:

    1. Lack of real-time information: SWOT analysis is often based on historical data and may not capture current market trends or emerging opportunities and threats. In today's dynamic business landscape, real-time information is crucial for effective decision-making.

    2. Overemphasis on internal factors: SWOT analysis primarily focuses on internal factors within an organization, such as strengths and weaknesses. However, in the modern business environment, external factors like technological advancements, socio-cultural changes, and geopolitical trends play a significant role in shaping opportunities and threats.

    3. Oversimplification of complex issues: SWOT analysis tends to simplify complex business issues into four distinct categories, which can lead to oversights or neglect of important factors. It may not adequately capture the interconnectedness or complexity of modern business challenges.

    4. Lack of strategic guidance: SWOT analysis provides a snapshot of an organization's current state but falls short in providing strategic guidance or a clear roadmap for the future. It may not effectively address how an organization can leverage its strengths to seize opportunities or mitigate threats.

    5. Limited focus on competition: SWOT analysis may not adequately address competitive dynamics and market forces. It may not provide a comprehensive understanding of how competitors' actions can impact an organization's strategy and success.

    While SWOT analysis still offers some value, it is often supplemented or replaced by more dynamic and comprehensive strategic planning tools, such as PESTEL analysis (Political, Economic, Socio-cultural, Technological, Environmental, and Legal) or Porter's Five Forces analysis, which provide a broader perspective and adaptability to today's business challenges.

    Has anything replaced SWOT analysis?

    While SWOT analysis remains a widely used strategic planning tool, some alternative frameworks have emerged in recent years that build upon or complement the traditional SWOT approach. These frameworks aim to provide a more comprehensive and nuanced analysis of an organization's internal and external factors. Some of the popular alternatives include:

    1. PESTEL analysis: PESTEL stands for Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Environmental, and Legal factors. This framework expands the external analysis by considering broader macro-environmental factors that may impact an organization's strategic decisions.

    2. Porter's Five Forces: Developed by Michael Porter, this framework analyzes an industry's competitive forces, including the threat of new entrants, bargaining power of buyers and suppliers, threat of substitute products, and intensity of competitive rivalry. It helps in understanding the competitive dynamics of an industry and identifying opportunities and threats.

    3. VRIO analysis: VRIO stands for Value, Rarity, Imitability, and Organization. This framework focuses on assessing an organization's internal resources and capabilities to determine its competitive advantage. It helps identify strengths and weaknesses more precisely, allowing for a more targeted strategy formulation.

    4. Blue Ocean Strategy: This strategic framework encourages organizations to seek uncontested market spaces ("blue oceans") rather than competing in existing markets ("red oceans"). By focusing on innovation and creating new demand, organizations can escape competition and create their own market segment.

    It's important to note that these alternatives are not necessarily replacements for SWOT analysis but rather complementary tools that provide additional perspectives and insights. Organizations often use a combination of these frameworks to conduct a more comprehensive analysis.

    Which company is good for SWOT analysis?

    It depends on the specific industry or sector you are interested in analyzing. However, some commonly analyzed companies for SWOT analysis include:

    1. Apple Inc.
    2. Google (Alphabet Inc.)
    3. Amazon.com Inc.
    4. Microsoft Corporation
    5. Coca-Cola Company
    6. Toyota Motor Corporation
    7. Nike Inc.
    8. Walmart Inc.
    9. Procter & Gamble Co.
    10. Tesla Inc.

    These are just a few examples, and there are numerous other companies that can be analyzed using SWOT analysis based on their industry and market position.

    Is SWOT analysis outdated?

    No, SWOT analysis is not outdated. It is still widely used as a strategic planning tool by businesses and organizations to assess their internal strengths and weaknesses, as well as external opportunities and threats. SWOT analysis provides a framework for evaluating the current state of affairs and identifying areas for improvement or potential risks. While there may be other tools and approaches available, SWOT analysis remains a valuable tool in many strategic planning processes.

    Want to create a presentation now?

    • instantly

      Instantly Create A Deck

      Let PitchGrade do this for me

    • smile

      Hassle Free

      We will create your text and designs for you. Sit back and relax while we do the work.

    Explore More Content