Gilead announced its fiscal results the other day and boy was it good news for anyone backing its Sovalid product. It seems that Sovaldi sold $2.27 B in the first Qtr alone. That exceeded forecast (even on high side) by $1 B dollars. You think there isn't some Sales and Marketing VP dancing in the streets right now? What do you think their bonuses will look like? Now you understand why investors are so critical of botched launches like Dendreon's and why there is Hell to pay when it happens. Sovalid certainly has a wider appeal than Provenge and a much higher upside -- but you get the drift as to what happens inside a company with a knock-your-socks off launch versus an abject disaster that costs just about everybody his/her job. See Bloomberg and Fierce Biotech.
On a more somber note, the folks at Express Scripts can't be too thrilled with the high flying Gilead result as they have been outspoken critics of Sovaldi's pricing and have been saber-rattling as to how they plan to back competitors in a price war if necessary to get prices down. This may be easier said than done if Sovaldi continues to get this high market penetration and racks up the sales. It is likely to make it popular with physicians and patients alike it it really does a great job in the clinic too. And there will be plenty of exposure at this point to make that assessment. See Fierce Pharma.
Posted by Bruce Lehr April 25th 2014.