Mumbai, June 4: Putting reverses on the anti-diabetes molecule behind it, Dr Reddy’s Laboratories (DRL) intends to enlarge its portfolio of high-margin drugs, which could include speciality pills and a range of generic products.
At the centre-stage of speciality drugs will be amlodipine maleate, a medicine whose fate hinges on a dUS court ruling next month over alleged patent-infringement violations. DRL is confident a lower court ruling delivered last year will be upheld. The order had cleared the way for the sale of the drug, a version of Pfizer’s blockbuster Norvasc, in the US. The decree marked the first time an Indian pharmaceutical company had won a speciality products case. Unlike a generic version, a speciality drug is an innovation over an existing one, which could lead to product exclusivity of up to three years.
Analysts estimate a topline boost of at least Rs 250 crore if Dr Reddy’s secures a favourable verdict next month.
The focus on high-margin drugs came through at an analysts’ conference call company CEO G. V. Prasad held early this week. Sources say the company expects better margins even in generic products by making the best of first-to-file opportunities.
DRL claims advantages in seven of the 10 Para IV cases filed in the US. The proviso gives firms a marketing exclusivity of 180 days in the US. DRL has already tasted success on this front through fluoxetine.
Even in the case of Para III applications (where companies do not obtain such an exclusivity in marketing a generic product), DRL is pushing products where the possibility of selling it at a sharp discount to that of the innovator’s drug is low.