Union President Mark "Isy" Snyder recently informed workers that the company would like to go to 12-hour shifts since some processes take longer than 8 hours.
Merck CEO Kenneth C. Frazier today had to give shareholders the bad news and then he had to follow that up with the really bad news.
Today's look at AstraZeneca's ($AZN) bleak 2012 numbers highlights the market-crunching wallop many of the world's biggest pharma companies have suffered as megablockbusters like Plavix and Singulair have gone off patent. But a new analysis from EvaluatePharma concludes that the industry giants will have almost as much at stake again when the 2015 patent cliff arrives.
By the time the ball drops in Times Square this year, branded drug sales will have dropped 3.5%. So says a new report on U.S. spending, which pegs this year's decline at that rate--and forecasts an annual decline of 2.6%, on average, over the next several years.
For the second quarter in a row, Merck has surprised the market with a better-than-expected earnings picture. Job cuts and sales hustle helped Merck offset a 55% hit to its former top seller, asthma medicine Singulair, which went off patent in August.
With all of the pressures in place to promote generics of popular branded drugs, the time it takes to go from blockbuster to just buster has become remarkably short. New data shows that Merck's asthma-and-allergy drug Singulair fell nearly 90% in just the four weeks since the generics were approved.
They're playing a dirge at Merck today, for their blockbuster asthma-and-allergy drug Singulair. The FDA approved a host of generic competitors Friday. So, today, the decline begins--and it's likely to be swift.
Sales of Merck's asthma drug Singulair were up 5.7%. Its diabetes drug Januvia grew 36% to $1.06 billion, and sales of its other key diabetes treatment, Janumet, climbed 28% to $411 million. But it wasn't enough to offset the money the company spent to position itself for the loss of falling revenues when Singulair loses patent protection in August and others follow in the months to come.
Merck and AstraZeneca have opted for a little more togetherness. The two companies amended their marketing-and-supply arrangement on the stomach drugs Prilosec and Nexium, allowing Merck to continue booking profits from sales of the two drugs for at least two more years.
Even as the clock is ticking down on the patent for its super blockbuster Singulair, Merck ($MRK) got smacked Friday with a negative decision in its battle with genericmaker Apotex over Merck's blockbuster Nasonex spray.