Apricus Offloads Non-Core Assets

Zacks Equity Research

Apricus Biosciences, Inc. (APRI) recently announced that it has divested Totect and NitroMist. In Dec 2012, the company had decided to divest its oncology supportive care business, Apricus Pharmaceuticals.

Totect, an injectable treatment for anthracycline extravasation, has been acquired by Biocodex Laboratories, a French pharmaceutical company. Apricus sold the commercialization rights for Totect in North America and South America. As per the agreement, Apricus received an upfront payment and will receive royalties on net sales of Totect through 2016.

NitroMist is indicated for acute relief of an attack or acute prophylaxis of angina pectoris due to coronary artery disease. The product has been acquired by Mist Pharmaceuticals, a specialty pharmaceutical company. Apricus sold them the commercialization and marketing rights of NitroMist in all countries outside the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

Our Take

We are positive on the divestiture of Totect and NitroMist as this will help Apricus focus on its core products. Divesting non-core assets is in line with the company’s strategic decision to focus its resources on Vitaros and Femprox. Apricus wants to invest in the commercialization of Vitaros, which is used for the treatment of erectile dysfunction, and also for the development of Femprox for the potential treatment of female sexual arousal disorder.

Apricus carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Currently, companies like QLT Inc (QLTI), UCB SA (UCBJF) and WuXi Pharma Tech (Cayman) Inc. (WX) look more attractive with a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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