We see this co-promotion arrangement as a positive way for (Avanir) to leverage its dedicated sales force at minimal additional cost"
Even the bearish strange analyst at Jefferies likes the Merck Avanir collaboration:
Jefferies analyst Thomas Wei said in a research note that the deal lasts three years, and Avanir is eligible to receive up to $60 million. He also said that the deal could be extended since Januvia has U.S. patent protection extending at least until 2022.
"We see this co-promotion arrangement as a positive way for (Avanir) to leverage its dedicated sales force at minimal additional cost," Wei wrote, noting that he company recently expanded to 80 representatives from 54.
That expanded sales force allows Avanir to reach about 50 percent of all nursing homes, Wei said.
The agreement may also help defray some the costs fo Avanir to build out its sales team, Wei said, and the new products will have little impact on their ability to promote Avanir's Nuedexta. That drug treats pseudobulbar affect, a condition associated with brain disease or injury that involves involuntary emotional outbursts like laughing or crying.