A 2-Day Training Course Delivered By
Gary JohnsonSam Johnson

Gary Johnson & Sam Johnson

  • Gary is the founder & Chairman of Inpharmation, Europe’s most respected pharma forecasting & pricing specialist consultancy, and the author of Sales Forecasting for Pharmaceuticals: An Evidence Based Approach and Value Pricing for Market Access: Evidence-Based Pricing for Pharmaceuticals.
  • As Board Director and Head of Research and Development, Sam leads the development of forecasting and pricing technologies at Inpharmation.
  • Gary and Sam have been involved in the pricing and/or forecasting of around half of the new molecular entity launches over the past 5 years.


  1. The 6 proven principles for producing the most accurate forecasts.
  2. When and how to use epi-based vs. sales-based forecasts.
  3. How to build Market Access correctly into your forecasts.
  4. Market share forecasting, including the simple models that provide the best forecasts.
  5. Uptake models: Why products are taken up by the market at different speeds and how to model this.
  6. Extrapolation techniques: How to project a trend in the most accurate way.
  7. The sources of data and the advantages and disadvantages of different source types.
  8. How to deal with unique-to-pharma issues like lines of therapy, co-prescription, etc.

Additional Benefits

  • You will learn the dos & don’ts during practical exercises and discussions of real-life examples, as well as learn from industry peers that deal with pharma forecasts on a regular basis.
  • Receive an Excel-based forecasting tool which integrates all the techniques taught during the workshop, as well as Gary’s book 'Sales Forecasting for Pharmaceuticals: An Evidence Based Approach'.


Why You Should Attend

With every major business decision in pharma being based on a sales forecast, it is imperative that you know how to forecast (and challenge forecasts) accurately. Therefore, the focus of this course is on teaching the concepts, techniques and approaches which have been proven to work best for pharmaceuticals. 

The Content: Unlike other forecasting courses, this programme teaches a multitude of modelling techniques and how to combine them in order to generate the most accurate results, as opposed to focusing on one single complex model. It is also pharma specific, meaning issues like market access are taken into account.

The Experts: Gary Johnson is Europe's most respected pharma forecasting & pricing expert and has authored the industry’s most authoritative books on pharma forecasting and pricing. Gary and Sam are respectively the founder & Chairman and the Head of Research and Development at Inpharmation, a specialist consultancy that has been involved in the pricing and/or forecasting of around half of the new molecular entity launches over the past five years.
They have trained 1000s of executives around the world. The presentations are constantly tweaked according to delegate feedback. They have thus evolved over the years so they are easy to understand and consistently get very high customer feedback scores.

The Pharma Forecasting Course is the only available public training course delivered by Gary Johnson and Sam Johnson on the topic of pharma sales forecasting.

Agenda of The Pharma Forecasting Course

For start and end times, please check Dates & Locations below.

Day 1

Welcome & General Introduction (~30 min)

The Right Approach to Forecasting (~30 min)

  • When to use models and when to use judgement
  • When to use extrapolation and when to use “causal” (e.g. promotional spend)
  • Whether to use a single forecasting model or more than one

The Proven Rules of Good Forecasting (~1 h 30 min)

  • Why you should ‘divide and conquer’ when building a forecast
  • Why simple approaches work best (and what we mean by ‘simple’)
  • The other key rules that forty years of academic research into forecasting have proven
Lunch Break

Structuring a Forecast (~1 h)

  • What is meant by an ‘epi-based forecast’
  • What is meant by a ‘patient-based forecast’
  • What is meant by a ‘sales-based forecast’
  • When to use each of the above

Extrapolation (~30 min)

  • A simply totally non-mathematical explanation of how extrapolation techniques differ from each other
  • Which simple extrapolation techniques work best?
  • Which ones are built into Excel and which ones require additional software
  • How to take seasonality into account in your forecast

The Impact of Product Profile on Your Market Share (~1 h)

  • The key idea behind conjoint analysis (the most common research technique for looking at the impact of product profile)
  • How to build a simple conjoint-type model yourself, without a survey for forecasting



Day 2

Modelling Exercise – Part 1 (~45 min)

ECONOMETRICS - The Impact of Launch Order on Your Market Share (~30 min)

  • How and why launch order affects your market share
  • How to build a simple launch order model to predict the impact of your launch order

ECONOMETRICS – The Impact of Promotional Spend on Your Market Share (~15 min)

  • How and why promotional spend affects your market share
  • How to build a simple promotional spend model to predict the impact of promotional spend on your market share

Building Market Access and Other Pharma Specific Considerations into Your Forecast (~1 h)

  • How market access has different effects at different levels of your forecast
  • Simple market access modelling approaches
  • How co-prescription affects shares
  • How ‘lines of therapy’ affect shares
  • The risks of using analogue modelling and market research that quantifies the intention of physicians to prescribe

Lunch Break

Forecasting How Quickly You Will Achieve Your Sales Potential (~1 h 30 min)

  • Why therapy class uptakes tend to be ‘s-shaped’
  • Why brand market share uptakes tend to be ‘r-shaped’
  • A simple non-mathematical explanation of how the famous Bass Model can help you predict the above
  • Flow/State models (new, repeat, switch etc.) and their role in forecasting uptakes

Modelling Exercise – Part 2 (~30 min)

The future of Forecasting: AI, Big Data, Predictive Analytics and Machine Learning (~30 min)

  • Artificial Intelligence: what it is; how pharma is using it
  • Big Data: what it is; why it is "information poor"
  • Predictive Analytics: what it is and its main tools (neural nets etc.)
  • Machine Learning: what it is and how it differs from traditional data analytics
  • How good are these tools at making forecasts and do the established principles of forecasting apply to them?


>> Click here if you wish to receive the PDF brochure of this course

Learning Methodology

The first day of this course takes the form of an interactive lecture, with the expert explaining theory around forecasting and forecast modelling. Gary’s storytelling approach to teaching helps make complex concepts simple to understand and easy to remember.

The second day is more practically focused and revolves around modelling a full epi-based forecast in stages using an Excel based tool (which you can take home). This exercise will be completed within groups and Gary will give further explanation of the techniques between each stage of building the forecast.

One of the most valuable aspects of attending any CELforPharma course is not only being able to have your specific questions answered by a leading expert, but also having the opportunity to share experiences and have in-depth discussions with your international peers.

infoThe typical audience size of our courses ranges from 6 to 20 (max) participants.

Who Should Attend?

The course focuses on predicting the sales of branded pharmaceuticals and is very useful for:

  • Forecasters who want to build more evidence based approaches into their forecasts.
  • Marketers who want to understand how to link forecasts to their real-world concerns (like the competitiveness of their product profile, promotional spend, speed to market etc.).
  • Market researchers who want to know how to take data from surveys and audits and reflect them in forecasts.
  • Market access and pricing executives who want to break down the silos that exist between forecasting and other functions and to understand how their concerns should be reflected in forecasts.
  • As well as any other executive who has to produce or receive a forecast as a part of their professional role.

As this course is delivered by Gary Johnson and Sam Johnson of Inpharmation, a leading specialist in evidence based insights for the pharma Industry, executives from other professional service agencies should request approval prior to registering for this course. Please contact Annelies Swaan, Director Business Operations, for more information (aswaan@celforpharma.com, tel +32 (0)2 709 01 42).


Past Participants

Below is a non-exhaustive list of past participants who have benefited from attending this course.


Job Title



Business Unit Director ImmunologyAbbvieNorway
Business Planning & Analysis ManagerAmgenNetherlands
Associate Brand DirectorAstellasUnited Kingdom
Manager Business DevelopmentAstraZenecaGermany
Business Information ManagerBayer Healthcare PharmaceuticalsNetherlands
Global Business AnalystBoehringer IngelheimGermany
Jr New Product Planning ManagerChiesiItaly
Head of Business DevelopmentChugaiUnited Kingdom
Marketing Manager - Global Generic DrugsFresenius KabiGermany
Business Development ManagerGaldermaFrance
Business Planning and Analysis ManagerGlaxoSmithKlineSpain
Lifecycle Management Leader EMEAJanssenDenmark
Market Projection ManagerLEO PharmaFrance
Regional Market Access ManagerLundbeckDenmark
Manager, Region Europe Market Research and Business AnalyticsNovartisPortugal
Market Research Manager / Corporate BDOnxeoFrance
Supply Chain Co-ordinatorOtsukaUnited Kingdom
New Business Lead, Global Commercial DevelopmentPfizerUSA
Financial Controller / HR / ITProstrakanGermany
Marketing Leader Rheumatology /AVM Task Force Leader SwitzerlandRocheSwitzerland
Manager Global Analytics and Systems, Global Sales ForecastingSandozSlovenia
Decision Support ExecutiveSanofiUnited Kingdom
Directeur Evaluation MarketingServierFrance
Business Insights AnalystShireBelgium
Business Intelligence ManagerTherabelFrance
International Brand ManagerTillotts PharmaSwitzerland
Director, New Product PlanningUCBBelgium
Finance Project Analyst ManagerVecturaUnited Kingdom
Forecasting ManagerZambonItaly



Dates & Locations

All live online CELforPharma courses are hosted in Zoom.

Our face-to-face courses take place at the Crowne Plaza Brussels Airport (Da Vincilaan 4, 1831 Brussels), a four-star hotel located 5 minutes from Brussels National Airport and 30 minutes by taxi from Brussels South train station (Thalys, TGV, Eurostar).

  • 5-6 October 2023, face-to-face in Brussels

    Day 1: 10:00 - 16:30 CET (Brussels/Amsterdam/Paris)
    Day 2: 09:00 - 16:00 CET (Brussels/Amsterdam/Paris)
  • 14-15 December 2023, live online

    Day 1: 10:00 - 16:00 CET (Brussels/Amsterdam/Paris)
    Day 2: 10:00 - 16:00 CET (Brussels/Amsterdam/Paris)


Hotel Booking Assistance

As part of our strong relationship with the Crowne Plaza Brussels Airport, CELforPharma has secured a discount on the daily room rate for our delegates who book their accommodation via us. Upon your registration, we will assist you to make your hotel booking. For any assistance in this matter please do not hesitate to contact Kealeigh Steel, Senior Programme Coordinator (kealeigh.steel@celforpharma.com, tel +32 (0)2 709 01 45).

Included in the Registration Fee​ - for the live online course

  • Access to a small-class (max 20 participants), expert led course in real-time, using an interactive platform for break-out rooms, whiteboard exercises, polling, plenary discussions and chats.
  • Course material, which will be provided to you in both digital format (by email) and in hard copy (by post, so you can make notes during the course).
  • Certificate of attendance signed by the experts and CELforPharma.
  • Book “Sales Forecasting for Pharmaceuticals: An Evidence Based Approach” by Gary Johnson.


Included in the Registration Fee - for the face-to-face course

  • Participation in a small-class (max 20 participants), expert led face-to-face course with interactive group exercises and plenary discussions. You will have the opportunity to meet the expert(s) and discuss your own projects/issues during the breaks.
  • Course material, which will be provided to you in both digital format (by email) and in hard copy (so you can make notes during the course).
  • Coffee, tea & refreshments during the course.
  • Informal networking lunch.
  • Group dinner in the evening of Day 1.
  • Certificate of attendance signed by the experts and CELforPharma.
  • Book “Sales Forecasting for Pharmaceuticals: An Evidence Based Approach” by Gary Johnson.


Group Discounts

Team discounts can be offered to 3 or more delegates from the same company.
Contact Annelies Swaan, Director Business Operations, (aswaan@celforpharma.com) for more details.


How to Register

  1. Click the "Register Here" button on this page.
  2. Choose a course date, then fill out your personal details and company / invoicing details.
  3. Choose to pay via bank transfer or by credit card (through a secure payment link, which you will receive together with the invoice).
  4. Click "Confirm Registration". You will be sent an automatic email confirming your registration followed by a personal email containing an invoice and further payment instructions.

For assistance in registering, raising a PO or invoicing, please do not hesitate to contact Kealeigh Steel.
(email: kealeigh.steel@celforpharma.com or call: +32 2 709 01 45)


Transfer & Cancellation Policy

Flexible Transfer

  • If a registrant cannot attend the scheduled course, he/she can avoid any cancellation charge by sending a suitable replacement participant.
  • Alternatively, the registrant can transfer once on a “space available” basis at no extra cost, until 3 weeks prior to the event, to another course of the same value held within one year of the original course date.

Registration Cancellation

  • Less than 14 days prior to the course date: registrant liable to pay the full invoiced registration fee.
  • Between 15 and 30 days prior to the course date: registrant liable to pay 50% of the invoiced registration fee.
  • More than 30 days prior to the course date: registrant liable to pay a cancellation fee of € 450 per registrant.
  • If a registrant postpones his/her participation to a future course, and cancels again, no refund can be claimed for registration fees.

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