The Experts in Animal Health

This month Brakke Consulting, Inc. celebrates 25 years in business.  Now the leading consultancy in the animal health and nutrition industries, the firm established by Ron Brakke in 1986 has witnessed tremendous change.  For example:

 • In 1986, the five largest animal health companies represented 20% of the industry; today the top 5 account for 60%.

 • In 1986, food animal products accounted for over 85% of the global market; today they represent about half.

 • In 1986, medicinal feed additives for livestock were 50% of the US market; today they represent 11%.

“The timing was fortuitous,” Brakke says.  “During our time in business the animal health industry has transitioned from largely an agricultural industry to one driven primarily by growth in the companion animal market. 

“In 1986, none of the major heartworm, flea-tick or pain management drugs were on the market.  Today they are the leading products in the industry.  As the market shifted it created tremendous opportunities for expert assistance,” Brakke says.

Before starting his consultancy, Brakke was president of Zoecon Industries, a supplier of insecticides for livestock and pets.  Under his leadership Zoecon grew from $15 million in sales in 1975 to $125 million in 1985.  Its parent company sold Zoecon in 1983.  Brakke stayed with the company for two years, then left to seek new challenges.

“When I launched the firm, I thought it would be an interim step as I considered other CEO positions.  But it soon became obvious that there was a real need for independent expertise in the industry, and the firm really took off,” Brakke says.

Brakke Consulting today has 11 consultants, including one in Japan and another in Australia.  The firm also has relationships with other consultants in Europe and Latin America.

The firm provides services to pharmaceutical, pet food, feed and related companies in five major areas:  management consulting; merger, acquisition and licensing; executive recruiting; market intelligence; and veterinary practice management.  It also operates, an employee placement website. 

“Our consultants are all senior executives with deep, complementary industry experience,” Brakke says.  “Over the years we’ve found that our work, especially executive search and market research, have helped us keep our fingers on the pulse of the market.”

What does Ron Brakke see for the industry in the next 25 years?

“I think we’re beginning to see the end of the consolidation phase.  That became evident in the failed attempt by Merial and Intervet-Schering Plough to merge,” Brakke says.  “There will continue to be acquisitions and mergers.  But we expect to see more emphasis on diversification as the large firms broaden their portfolios and strive to become more full-service.  There will also be more focus, among both manufacturing and distribution companies, on global capabilities.”

As for himself, Brakke is as enthusiastic as ever about the consulting business.  “There’s more change, happening at a fast pace.  It’s a great time to be a consultant!” Brakke says.

About Brakke Consulting
Brakke Consulting is headquartered in Dallas, TX, with offices in Chicago, Omaha, St. Louis, Kansas City, Stuart, FL, Sydney, Australia and Osaka, Japan. For more information, contact Brakke Consulting, Inc., 2735 Villa Creek, Suite 140, Dallas, TX, 75234, (972) 243-4033,

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