Back in February, Endo took a whopping $3.5 billion write-down—but that wouldn’t be it for the year.
And that announcement came just one day after the Dublin drugmaker said it would raise by $775 million the amount it’s paying to wrap up the vaginal mesh saga that has been plaguing it for years. Between this year’s Q4 and the end of 2019, it’ll make settlement payments expected to cover about 22,000 U.S. liability claims, as well as all the international claims it’s aware of.
All in all, it’s been an expensive year for Endo, which has struggled in the face of executive turnover, industry-wide generics pricing pressure and more. The FDA’s June request that Endo nix long-acting opioid Opana—a $160 million seller thrust into the spotlight by the opioid addiction crisis—didn’t help.
The company did manage to record a street-beating Q2, though, triumphing in the face of low expectations. Notably, the “strength came ... on the back of a beat in generics,” which generated $563 million versus analyst forecasts of $525 million, RBC Capital Markets analyst Randall Stanicky pointed out in a note to clients.
Still, “the reality is cash flow generation toward continued paydown of debt/mesh will remain the primary focus in the stock over the near-term,” he said.
Meanwhile, opioids continue to face scrutiny from all sides, with a U.S. cost watchdog taking aim Tuesday. The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) published its final report on the effectiveness and value of abuse-deterrent versions of the highly addictive meds, determining that the safer products needed an average 41% discount to make them “cost-neutral” with their predecessors.