Needham & Company Sees 2nd-Half Qsymia Ramp for Vivus (VVUS)

February 26, 2013 8:21 AM EST
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Price: $1.19 +2.59%

Rating Summary:
    4 Buy, 8 Hold, 5 Sell

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Needham & Company reiterated its Buy rating and $20 price target on Vivus (NASDAQ: VVUS) following Q4 results yesterday.

The firm noted U.S. Qsymia sales were $2.0M, compared to our $2.7M estimate. The company pre-announced in Jan 2013 that 26,121 prescriptions had been shipped in 4Q12 through 12/21/12, guiding that gross-net would be negatively impacted during the launch but improve with time. Management did not provide Qsymia sales or OpEx guidance for 2013 last night.

The firm expects expect Qsymia sales ramp to improve in the 2nd-half of 2013. They see 1Q13 and 2013 sales projections are $7.5M (new) and $91M (unch).

Some other notes from the analyst:
  • Management appears open to possibility of a U.S. Qsymia;
  • A CV trial is scheduled to begin in 4Q13, with an interim analysis ~2015. The 16k pt trial will be powered for NI and superiority;
  • The EMA rejected an appeal by Vivus, requesting that a CV outcomes trial be completed prior to approval. The company is exploring unspecified alternatives. We do not model sales in the EU;
  • Arena/Eisai announced Belviq WAC pricing yesterday of $199.50 for a one-month supply. Launch is possible at any point through mid-April 2013. Qsymia pricing remains unchanged from launch;
  • Vivus ended 4Q12 with $215M in cash, down from $274M in 3Q12.

    For an analyst ratings summary and ratings history on Vivus click here. For more ratings news on Vivus click here.

    Shares of Vivus closed at $12.41 yesterday.

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