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Endo International Kills Deals with VIVUS and Acerus

Written by: | | Dated: Thursday, December 31st, 2015

Endo International plc (ENDP), via its Auxilium Pharmaceuticals (AUXL) and Endo Ventures Limited subsidiaries, announced today that it has ended commercialization deals with VIVUS, Inc. (VVUS) and with Acerus Pharmaceuticals Corporation (TRLPF).

On Jan. 29, 2015, Dublin-based Endo International plc completed the acquisition of Auxilium Pharmaceuticals in a deal worth $2.6 billion. Endo is a specialty healthcare company with global headquarters in Dublin and U.S. headquarters in Malvern, Penn.

VIVUS, Inc., headquartered in Mountain View, Calif., manufactures Stendra, a drug used to treat erectile dysfunction. Endo held the U.S. marketing rights for Stendra. In May, in Endo’s quarterly financial reporting, the company indicated that the launch of Stendra was disappointing and the wholesale inventory levels were about twice what the company wanted.

In response, the company said in a statement, “We are investing to re-launch Stendra in late second quarter. We have engaged a new contract sales organization and recently completed training of those associates. And we plan to launch a targeted DTC campaign to build patient and physician awareness.”

In response to questions from analysts regarding its new marketing approach, the company said in a question-and-answer session, “…our concept of DTC is not national broadcast TV. We don’t think that’s the right move for the product at this point. So we are going to take a more targeted approach to it. So it will be more creative in terms of how DTC works. But suffice it to say that we will put sufficient resources behind it to do the real start of re-launching.”

The latest announcement would seem to indicate that the company is not satisfied with those marketing efforts or overall sales of Stendra. The effective date of termination is June 30, 2016.

In addition, Endo’s subsidiary, Endo Ventures Bermuda Limited, ended a licensing deal with Acerus Pharmaceuticals Corporation. This deal, too, ends on June 30, 2016. This deal was over the licensing rights in the U.S. and Mexico for a testosterone nasal gel, Natesto, which is used for replacement therapy in adult males with hypogonadism.

Acerus Pharmaceuticals Corporation is headquartered in Toronto, Ontario (Canada). As part of the deal, Endo will sell and distribute Natesto in the U.S. until the termination date.

“While we are disappointed with Endo’s previously announced strategic business decision to realign their U.S. branded resources from urology retail to their pain franchise, we are fully committed to the continued success of Natesto in the U.S.,” said Tom Ross, Acerus’s president and chief executive officer, in a statement. “Our immediate focus is on finding a new Natesto partner in the U.S., the largest market for testosterone replacement therapy. We are encouraged by the positive physician and patient feedback received on the product to date, and believe there will be strong interest from other companies to step in and continue to drive the launch of Natesto.”

Endo International Kills Deals with Auxilium Pharma and Acerus Pharma
December 31, 2015
By Mark Terry, Breaking News Staff
Source: BioSpace

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