Diabetes pricing war? Sanofi, Lilly and Novo each have their ideas

When Sanofi ($SNY) announced that its franchise would suffer next year because of U.S. payer contracts, the natural follow-up question was this: Does this mean a diabetes pricing war? If Sanofi had to boost its rebates to win coverage--which the company admits it did--then that means its rivals, including Eli Lilly ($LLY) and Novo Nordisk ($NVO), have, too.

And with that payer pressure unlikely to ease anytime soon, more and bigger rebates may be on their way. Or more exclusions--and those formulary decisions on high make life difficult for sales reps in the field. But if recent executive comments--and past policies--have anything to say about it, Sanofi, Lilly and Novo are using very different approaches to winning favor with payers.

Sanofi said Tuesday that its diabetes sales would be flat for 2015, thanks to those payer contracts. Lantus, the company's top-selling drug with more than $7 billion in 2013 sales, was able to win reimbursement in 90% of the U.S. market, CEO Chris Viehbacher--departed as of today--said during the third-quarter earnings call. "However, this did cost more in rebates," he said. Read more at FiercePharmaMarketing >>