Upbeat sales lift Novo Nordisk as drugmaker weathers U.S. pricing pressure | Reuters

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) – Novo Nordisk (NOVOb.CO), the world’s top maker of diabetes drugs, reported encouraging sales of its main growth drivers on Thursday as it announced more job cuts amid a restructuring to cope with intensifying pricing pressure in the United States.

The logo of Danish multinational pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk is pictured on the facade of a production plant in Chartres, north-central France, April 21, 2016. REUTERS/Guillaume Souvant/Pool
Sales of Novo’s new once-weekly Ozempic GLP-1 drug, which the Danish company hopes will take market share from Eli Lilly’s (LLY.N) Trulicity, beat forecasts for the third quarter.

Eli Lilly has been eating into Novo’s previously fast-selling Victoza – a so-called GLP-1 drug that imitates an intestinal hormone to stimulate insulin production. However, sales of Victoza, totaling 6.1 billion crowns in July-September, also beat analysts’ expectations, of 5.9 billion crowns.

Novo is counting on the GLP-1 franchise as its insulin drugs face price pressure and competition from biosimilar drugs, and its shares rose 2.6 percent in early trading on what Jefferies analysts called “a strong GLP-1 performance”.

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Upbeat sales lift Novo Nordisk as drugmaker weathers U.S. pricing pressure | Reuters.