A ‘buzzing’ flu vaccine has emerged as a $7 billion business
A vaccine that has become a huge business in China, but one that has yet to be marketed in the United States, is being marketed by a Chinese pharma company as an important tool in combating the pandemic.
The brand-name Fluvoxine, marketed by Valeant Pharmaceuticals, was released by the company in November and was given to more than 40 million people worldwide.
Fluvoxines are a type of antiviral drug used to treat acute bacterial infections and can be taken orally or as a shot in capsules.
Valeant has also released a vaccine, the Tavalasan (FluVoxine Tavalan-1), which was approved in the U.S. in March.
Tavalasans have not been marketed in India but Valeant’s flu vaccine, called FluVoxene, is manufactured in India and can also be bought in the country.
There are currently no flu vaccines available in the USA, where the pandemics of 2013 and 2015 have taken their toll on the health system, and India is the second-biggest market for Valeant and has a large population.
A few months after the flu vaccine’s launch, Valeant reported a profit of $1.5 billion on revenue of $13.6 billion.
While the company did not disclose the profit or share the financial impact of the new flu vaccine on its earnings call, the company said the vaccine was the company’s second-largest revenue driver.
“We saw an incredible level of engagement with our brand and with our vaccine program and we were able to drive growth by reaching new audiences, growing sales, and accelerating sales,” said Paul Hesse, Valeants chief financial officer.
Shares of Valeant rose 1.3 percent to $5,076.20 on Thursday.
Valeant said it had revenue of more than $1 billion in the fourth quarter of 2017.
The vaccine has also been approved in Canada, and in Europe.
It has been used in China and Taiwan and Valeant plans to launch a U.K. version of the vaccine in 2018.
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