Dr. Reddy's Launches Generic Lipitor

Zacks

Yet another generic version of Pfizer’s (PFE) cholesterol drug, Lipitor (atorvastatin calcium), entered the market recently with Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories (RDY) launching its generic version of the drug (10 mg, 20 mg, 40 mg and 80 mg) in the US.

Lipitor lost exclusivity in the US in late November 2011. Lipitor was a huge revenue generator for Pfizer and its loss of exclusivity represents the biggest generic opportunity in recent times. According to IMS Health, brand sales of Lipitor in the US were approximately $8.07 billion for the twelve months ending March 2012.

Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd., being the first company to gain Food and Drug Administration (:FDA) approval for its generic version of Lipitor, launched its product on Lipitor’s loss of exclusivity. Pfizer has tied up with generic player, Watson Pharmaceuticals (WPI) for an authorized generic version of Lipitor.

However, with the expiry of the 180-day generic exclusivity period in May, the generic Lipitor market is getting crowded. Mylan (MYL) launched its generic version of Lipitor (10 mg, 20 mg, 40 mg and 80 mg) in late May 2012.

Dr. Reddy’s is the latest to launch a generic version of Lipitor. Dr. Reddy’s has had quite a few generic launches this year. Earlier in June, the company launched its generic version of Roche’s (RHHBY) Boniva, approved for treating or preventing osteoporosis in women after menopause. It also helps to reduce the chances of spinal fracture.

Other launches include Dr. Reddy’s generic version of Novartis AG’s (NVS) over-the-counter (:OTC) drug, Prevacid and Bristol-Myers Squibb & Co.’s/Sanofi’s (BMY/SNY) blood thinner Plavix.

We currently have a Neutral recommendation on Dr. Reddy’s, which carries a Zacks #3 Rank (short-term ‘Hold’ rating.

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