This company doesn’t bring any bull to big pharma. 

Novo Nordisk makes and markets pharmaceuticals from its home base in Denmark. Its logo looks like an Apis Bull, which is an ancient Egyptian sacred animal. The company produces its products in eight different countries across the globe and has offices in five different countries. The majority of the company is controlled by the holding company Novo Holdings. This entity owns one quarter of Novo Nordisk shares and has a supermajority of forty-five percent of the voting rights in the company. 

With more than forty thousand employees working towards its goals, Novo Nordisk is a massive force in the pharmaceutical business. Its products are sold in one hundred and eighty countries. 


Novo Nordisk was created in 1989 when two major Danish pharmaceutical companies out of Denmark merged. These were Novo Terapeutisk and Nordisk Insulinlaboratorium.  

From its beginning, the company has grown into the largest supplier of insulin on the planet. Over the next thirty years, the company spun out many subsidiaries, including its enzyme business and its information technology arm. The company has also acquired several other companies in the last twenty years, including Xellia and Ablynx

Big Pharma

Major medical breakthroughs in the last fifty years have come out of Novo Nordisk. These have led to highly successful and profitable pharmaceutical services and products. Some of the company’s most successful products include hemostasis treatments, medications for diabetes care, hormone replacement therapies, and growth hormone treatments. 

Popular drugs from Novo Nordisk include Victoza, NovoSeven, NovoLog, Levemir, Novolin R, NovoEight, and Tresiba. 

This company is a full participant in the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries & Associations. Though it’s a big pharma company, Novo Nordisk is consistently ranked as one of the top one hundred companies in the world to work for. The corporate culture at Novo Nordisk is widely known for its positive support of workers. 

Diabetes Advocacy

One major facet of the research and development that comes out of Novo Nordisk is focused on diabetes. The company has been a long-running sponsor of the Unite for Diabetes campaign from the International Diabetes Federation. 

It’s also created its own initiatives. Starting from 2014, the company pioneered a program for the residents of urban areas called Cities Changing Diabetes. This program brings together a whole host of academics, urban planners, businesses, community leaders, healthcare professionals, and city authorities to combat the growing problem of diabetes. 

Novo Nordisk and its diabetes medications have recently been challenged by researchers at Harvard University. This research has the potential to take out enough of Novo Nordisk’s business that it could stop being viable as a company. However, the company’s chief medical officer, Dr. Alan Moses, publicly stated that he did not view this as a threat, but as a good thing for everyone. Even if that meant that his company went under. 

It’s this kind of thinking, which puts the patient first, that has set Novo Nordisk apart from other pharmaceutical companies. While this is still business, Novo Nordisk understands that patients should come before profits.