Allergan's brand recognition, rebates keep aesthetics unit primed for growth: Specialists


Good news for Allergan: The aesthetics market--which has lately been on the rise--is showing no signs of slowing down.

At least, that’s the word from aesthetic specialists grilled by Leerink Partners analyst Jason Gerberry. As he wrote in a note to clients, the docs expect the market for toxins and fillers to “continue to grow at a healthy pace,” and Allergan “is expected to remain a preferred supplier.”

The reasons behind growth in the category? Ad campaigns for Botox, an increasing level of comfort among consumers with the use of fillers, and an influx of men into the treatment pool have all boosted expansion, Gerberry said.

And the Dublin drugmaker is sitting in a great position to reap the benefits. Allergan’s wide aesthetic portfolio--highlighted by blockbuster treatment Botox--provides a competitive advantage, and the company’s products “have the best brand recognition,” he wrote. “Strong” rebate and loyalty programs don’t hurt, either.

Allergan has had a good thing going for years with Botox, which has managed to rack up a slew of indications beyond just erasing wrinkles. But since Actavis bought up the company in March of last year, it’s also added Kybella, a chin-fat-reducing med it gained in its buyout of Kythera. As the specialists noted, their early experiences with that product have been positive, and they expect to see it continue to gain steam.

Of course, opinions are subjective, and no two doctors agree on everything. Still, though, “we came away from the call increasingly confident” that Allergan’s facial injectable business--valued at about $2 billion--will be a “key growth driver” in the next three to 5 years, Gerberry said.

Allergan certainly wouldn’t mind that happening. Its aesthetics business is set to play a larger role at the company now that it’s no longer planning to join hands with Pfizer; the pair’s megamerger, agreed upon last November, was this year scuttled when the U.S. Treasury cracked down on tax inversions.

Special Report: Pharma's top 10 M&A deals of 2014 - Actavis/Allergan

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