Top Ten Pharmaceutical Companies in Europe

Written by: Lucy Walters
Published on: 16 Sep 2021

Top 10 Pharmaceutical Companies in EuropeIn this article, we outline 10 of the top pharmaceutical companies in Europe…


Roche is the world’s largest biotech company and a global pioneer in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. They are also the world leader in in vitro diagnostics and tissue-based cancer diagnostics, and a frontrunner in diabetes management.

Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche has sites in more than 25 countries across Europe. In 2020, the company saw group sales of CHF 58.3 billion, with sales from their Pharmaceuticals division reaching CHF 44.5 billion.


Novartis is a leading global medicines company, using science and technology to create transformative treatments in areas of great medical need. Novartis products reach almost 800 million people globally, and in 2020, net sales across the group reached $48.7 billion.

Novartis has created 218,000 jobs in the European market, and has generated more than EUR 38 billion of GDP contribution in Europe. The group has locations across Europe including sites in the UK, Switzerland, Spain, Poland, Norway, Italy and Germany.

Novo Nordisk

Headquartered just outside Copenhagen, Denmark, Novo Nordisk is a global healthcare company driving change to defeat diabetes and other chronic diseases including obesity and rare blood and endocrine diseases. The company employs more than 45,000 people in 80 offices around the world. In 2020, Novo Nordisk saw sales increase to DKK 126.9 billion, with net sales of DKK 126.7 million.


A global biopharmaceutical organisation focusing on the development of prescription medicines in the areas of Oncology, Cardiovascular, Renal & Metabolism, and Respiratory & Immunology. AstraZeneca has 44 locations across 30 countries in Europe with headquarters in Cambridge, UK. In 2020, the company reported total revenue of $26.6 million.


AbbVie discovers and delivers medicines that solve today’s serious health issues, primarily working on several therapeutic areas including immunology, oncology, neuroscience, eye care, virology, women’s health and gastroenterology. With the work of 48,000+ employees worldwide, AbbVie’s 2020 revenue reached $45.8 billion.


A global biopharmaceutical company focused on human health and on transforming the lives of those suffering from rare diseases and long-term chronic conditions. Sanofi has more than 100,000 employees working across 90 countries. In 2020, Sanofi’s sales reached EUR 36 million.


A Life Science company with a history of more than 150 years working on innovative products to find solutions to some of the major healthcare challenges of our time. Bayer is represented in 83 countries with almost 100,000 employees as of 2020, 45% of which are from the EMEA region. In 2020, Bayer achieved sales of approximately EUR 12.9 billion across EMEA alone, with total group sales reaching EUR 41.4 billion.


Pfizer is one of the world’s premier innovative biopharmaceutical companies, applying science and global resources to develop therapies that will extend and improve lives. In 2020, the company reported revenues of $41.9 billion.

Boehringer Ingelheim

A research-driven pharmaceutical company improving the health and quality of life of both humans and animals. Headquartered in Germany, Boehringer Ingelheim has over 51,000 employees and operates in 19 countries across Europe, including Austria, Belgium, Germany, France, Italy and Ireland. In 2020, the company reported group sales of EUR 19.6 billion.


MSD brings forward medicines and vaccines for many of the world’s most challenging diseases, pursuing their mission of saving and improving lives, and operates in 33 countries within Europe. In 2020, MSD reported worldwide sales of $48 billion, with 2021 sales anticipated to be between $51.8 billion and $53.8 billion.