The Swiss pharma company Novartis ranks in the top 10 of pharma companies, and boasts drugs ranging from Ritalin and Lamisil to clozapine, Diovan and Gilenya. It also owns the generic giant Sandoz. Unlike its competitor, GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis did not offer free flu vaccines during the H1N1 flu epidemic.

In March 2011, Novartis gained FDA approval for Gilenya, its multiple sclerosis drug. The nod came on the heels of a narrower EMA approval, which grants second-line treatment status. According to experts, the drug could be worth $3 billion in annual sales as the first oral MS drug on the market.

Novartis purchased the remaining portion of eye care company Alcon in a $12.9 billion deal at the end of 2010, marking the end of one of the biggest battles in biopharma. Although many analysts predicted heavy layoffs in 2010 from the company, only 1,400 jobs were cut in December 2010, with the disclaimer that more could be on the way as Novartis, like others in the industry, analyzes its efficiency.

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Latest Headlines

Novartis' Russian growth plans get delayed

Novartis is reportedly caught between EU sanctions on Russia and the dictates of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has told Western drugmakers that he expects them to build plants and transfer technology as the price of admission to the growing market.

UPDATED: Novartis faces technical issues on $150M plant in Russia

Construction of a $150 million plant that Novartis is building near St. Petersburg in Russia has been halted because of "technical reasons," just short of completion.

Novartis joins an Atlas syndicate to back cancer drug upstart Raze

Atlas Venture is launching one of its newly built biotechs with a Series A of $24 million, a founding partner on the board, a pair of its entrepreneurs heading the crew and some marquee investors in the syndicate, which includes Novartis. They've begun a voyage of discovery with Raze Therapeutics, part of Atlas's growing fleet of startups, to see how far they can go down a pathway that offers its investigators a shot at throwing a monkey wrench into the metabolic processes cancer uses to thrive.

India's NPPA fines Novartis $49M as price cap battles rage on

India's National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority has fined Novartis the equivalent of $49 million for overpricing its popular pain drug Voveran, and Novartis has responded by challenging NPPA's authority to do so. The fine is just the latest move in an escalating battle between drugmakers and the NPPA.

Covance and Novartis team up with eyes on Big Data

Covance has joined forces with Novartis to develop new ways to help drug developers quickly integrate and analyze huge swaths of study data.

Novartis taps Oxford BioMedica in $90M immuno-oncology deal

Novartis has expanded its relationship with the U.K.'s Oxford BioMedica, signing a deal worth up to $90 million that will support the drugmaker's efforts in CAR-T immunotherapies.

Novartis employee pleads guilty to bribery in Poland

Tuesday, two women pleaded guilty in a Polish court to handing a health fund official a trip worth more than $1,000 in exchange for backing the sale of a certain drug. And one of those women was a Novartis employee, the company said Thursday.

Sanofi bird flu vax prompts immune response in PhII--but only with Novartis adjuvant

As it works to refine its vaccine strategy for the event of an avian flu pandemic, the NIH is trialing Sanofi's H7N9 vaccine at a range of doses and with a variety of adjuvant combinations. And now, it has one that looks promising.

UPDATED: Takeda appoints new vaccine development head as Novartis' Oswald heads for the door

There's change at the top of a couple of vaccinemakers, with a pair of companies this week announcing upcoming roster moves. For Takeda, that means signing on a new head of vaccine development, while Novartis' vaccine division head will hit the road.

Novartis, Roche chiefs still top list of highest-paid Swiss managers despite exec-pay uproar

Swiss citizens may have recently voted for some of the world's tightest controls on executive pay. But did that keep the Roche and Novartis pharma chiefs from pocketing more than 13 million Swiss francs ($13.6 million) last year? Not according to a new study.