#6 Biogen Idec
14 Cambridge Center, Cambridge, MA 02142
Tel: (617) 679-2000 Fax: (617) 679-2617
|Top Selling Drugs
Account for 99% of total biopharma sales, same as in 2006.
It’s been a helter-skelter year for Biogen Idec. The company celebrated its 30th anniversary (well, Biogen’s 30th; Idec is a little younger) in May 2008, but only reached that event after failing to consummate a buyout it never really wanted to pursue.
In October 2007, the board announced it was open to selling the company off. Given the prices smaller biopharmas have fetched — $15.5 billion for MedImmune? — it made sense to explore the market. Two months later, the company decided it would stay independent. This announcement incurred the wrath of shareholder Carl Icahn, who was pushing for a buyout all along. Mr. Icahn has gone on to accuse Biogen’s board of misrepresenting and undermining the sales process. The board shot back with some pretty pointed comments about Mr. Icahn’s lack of ideas for improving shareholder value, as the two parties battled over a slate of directors.
Outside of the boardroom fights, how did Biogen Idec perform last year? Not bad! Tysabri began its belated climb up the MS market, Avonex continued to lead the company (despite falling to 9% growth in 2007), and co-promotion revenues and royalties from Rituxan almost reached $1.0 billion.
A month before the sell-out process began, Biogen launched a series of 2010 goals; evidently, the company’s “2015 Vision” became a little blurry. The new targets include
- reaching a 15% compound annual growth rate for revenues,
- sustaining sales of Avonex,
- expanding Rituxan into autoimmune indications,
- getting 100,000 patients on Tysabri,
- getting international business to account for 40% of revenues, and
- launching four new products or major indications and getting six more products into late-stage trials.
The existing product goals have been hit and miss. Avonex sales were up 19% in 1Q08, but Biogen and partner Genentech announced in April 2008 that Rituxan missed endpoints in clinical trials against Lupus and MS. Still, the company (with partner Elan) did manage to get Tysabri approved for second line treatment for Crohn’s disease and finished 1Q08 with 26,000 patients using the drug.
Anticipating large growth in Tysabri’s market, Biogen is finishing up a $300 million large-scale manufacturing facility in Denmark, slated to come online in 2009. Biogen Idec and Elan recently published data showing no new cases of PML, the complication that resulted in Tysabri’s suspension from the market in 2004. Biogen’s share of Tysabri sales in 1Q08 hit $115 million, up 283%.
In June 2008, Biogen Idec’s shareholders voted down Mr. Icahn’s proposed slate of directors, so the company may have gained some traction to pursue those 2010 goals.
For the full profile, including pipeline and patent information, download the PDF.