Glenmark: Launch of Favipiravir marks turnaround

Shares of Glenmark Pharmaceuticals rose 35% on Monday after the Mumbai-based drugmaker launched an antiviral drug Favipiravir for the treatment of mild to moderate covid-19 patients.
Glenmark Pharmaceuticals has become the first Indian company to commercially launch an antiviral drug – Favipiravir with brand name FabiFlu – for the treatment of mild to moderate COVID-19 patients.
Glenmark Pharmaceuticals share price opened 10% higher at Rs 450 against previous close of 409.10 on BSE. Later, due to huge bidding for the share, the upper circuit of the stock was revised to 35%. The stock was stuck in upper circuit of 35% at a price of Rs 552 on BSE.

It has gained 33.73% in last one month.  The stock has been gained 19.63% in the last 4 days. Market cap of the firm rose to Rs 13,274 crore on BSE.  Total 0.20 lakh shares changed hands amounting to turnover of Rs 90.75 lakh. The stock hit its 52-week high of Rs 517.70 on June 21, 2019 and 52 week low of Rs 168 on March 13, 2020.
The company received marketing and manufacturing approval from the Indian drug regulator, Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) and launched the product in the Indian market on June 20.

Favipiravir used for the treatment of mild-to-moderate symptoms of coronavirus, in what is a positive development for the investors of the one of the most under-performing pharma stocks.
If the drug proves to be efficacious over the next few months, Glenmark will enjoy first mover advantage at a time when the country is reporting record number new Covid-19 cases.
It will likely to boost the company’s local sales in the near term, increase its visibility among doctors and patients and, above all, vindicate the company’s sustained focus on R&D.
Glenmark’s management has not provided any estimate on the possible sale of this drug. The company has begun manufacturing the drug – which is due to be rolled out by early next week and is likely to be available pan-India within 8-10 days.

The ramp up in drug sales is dependent on the load of patients and how the pandemic develops. At Rs 103 a tablet and Rs 3,500 for the complete course of medication – it is moderately priced as compared with the competing drug Remdesivir, which too has received emergency drug approval for treatment of coronavirus patients with severe conditions and is likely to be made available by June end at around Rs 5,000 a dose.
Debt on the books, high expenses towards R&D, and headwinds to its US business have adversely impacted the company’s valuations on the Street in recent years.

Despite the price more than doubling during the period of the lockdown, the Glenmark stock is the only one in the pharma sector to trade 20% lower than its year-ago level. It is still trading at one-third the level of its record high in 2015.

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