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Jan Ascher

Senior Partner, Zurich
Helps leading pharmaceutical companies develop corporate and business-unit strategies maximizing the commercial potential of their products, and advises private-equity and principal investors on preinvestment decisions and postinvestment management

About Jan

Jan is a partner in our Zurich office, where he focuses on the pharmaceuticals industry and on product launch strategies. He serves leading companies in Switzerland, in the broader EMEA region, and in the US. He is a member of our Life Sciences Practice.

Jan leads our work in Dynamic Lifecycle Management globally, with a focus on product launch and established products strategies. He has an extensive knowledge of the pharmaceuticals industry, in particular in the areas of personalized therapies and rare diseases.

Jan supports leading pharmaceuticals companies to achieve distinctive product launch successes. This includes developing and embedding adaptive launch plans, advising on the few key strategic decisions that truly drive the success of each specific launch, and building winning institutional launch capabilities and mindsets.

He also supports leading pharmaceuticals companies to optimize the profitability of established brands. This includes product enhancements, portfolio optimizations, and organization and operating model improvements.

Jan received his Diplom-Kaufmann (MBA equivalent) from the WHU–Otto Beisheim School of Management in Germany and holds an MSc in Finance from HEC Lausanne in Switzerland.

Published work

Roche’s Infinity model: Helping to transform the lives of patients with rare diseases,” McKinsey & Company, July 2021

How to turn everyday stress into ‘optimal stress,’” McKinsey & Company, February 2021

A new prescription for M&A in pharma,” McKinsey & Company, September 2020

From product to customer experience: The new way to launch in pharma,” McKinsey & Company, August 2018

Launches in oncology: The elements of success,” McKinsey & Company, August 2018

How to successfully launch a rare disease drug in a patient-centric world,” McKinsey & Company, January 2017

Commodity trading at a strategic crossroad,” McKinsey Working Papers on Risk, Number 39, December 2012

“Winning in Russian pharma: The next growth horizon,” Unlocking pharma growth: Navigating the intricacies of emerging markets, McKinsey & Company, November 2012

Past experience

Feldnachrichtenlehrkompanie 300, Bundeswehr
Lieutenant of the Reserve


WHU-Otto Beisheim School of Management, Germany

HEC Lausanne, Switzerland
MSc, finance