Novo Looks at Raising Obesity Sales Targets on Demand for Wegovy
(Bloomberg) -- Novo Nordisk A/S is considering raising the sales guidance for its obesity drugs after a strong introduction for its new medication called Wegovy, Chief Executive Officer Lars Fruergaard Jorgensen said in an interview.
“It’s fair to say that the prospects here are better than we have guided,” Jorgenson said. “The clinical profile was better than we anticipated, the market reception is very strong, and we also see that even in markets without Wegovy that the obesity market is also being established.”
Novo has previously said it aims to more than double 2019 obesity sales by 2025, to about $1.8 billion. The company hasn’t decided the specific new guidance yet and is waiting to see more data about Wegovy’s performance and for supply of the drug to stabilize, Jorgensen said.
Wegovy, which was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in June, helps patients lose about 15% of their body weight on average. Within about five weeks, the company saw as many prescriptions for Wegovy as Saxenda had produced in a few years, Jorgensen said.
“The initial number of scripts significantly outpaced our expectations, and then we ran into supply issues and we had to face a more flat-ish development in new scripts,” he said. “We had expected a more steady build, which is what we have seen in the past, when we have launched new products.”
Novo also makes the weight loss medication Saxenda, which was launched in the U.S. in 2015 and is expected to lose patent protection in the coming years. The space is seen as a key avenue of growth for Novo, which known primarily as a diabetes-drug maker.
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