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Glenmark to defend position in US price-fixing case

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on July 01, 2020 Published on July 01, 2020

The US Department of Justice has charged Glenmark with conspiring with Apotex Corp, others to increase the price of cholesterol medication pravastatin and other generic drugs

Drugmaker Glenmark has said it will “vigorously defend” its position in the alleged price fixing case in the US.

The company was responding to the news that the US Department of Justice had charged Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Inc “for conspiring to fix prices for generic drugs.” In its note the DoJ said, “The charge, filed today (Tuesday) in the US District Court in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, alleges that Glenmark conspired with other generic drug companies, including a company with its principal place of business in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, and Apotex Corp., to increase and maintain prices of pravastatin and other generic drugs beginning in or around May 2013 and continuing until at least in or around December 2015.”

Pravastatin is a prescription medication that reduces cholesterol, helping to prevent heart attacks and strokes. “The charge alleges that the gain to the conspirators, and the loss to the victims, was at least $200 million,” the DoJ note said. 

In a statement to BusinessLine, Glenmark said, “We strongly disagree with the charges being advanced by the Justice Department and do not believe the evidence supports the government’s case. These charges run contrary to the very essence of Glenmark – to drive down drug prices and improve patient access to medications. We will continue to vigorously defend against these charges, and we are confident the overwhelming evidence will make that clear.”

Glenmark is the fifth company to be charged over the last 13 months in connection with antitrust violations in the generic pharmaceutical industry. Earlier this year, Apotex had by a deferred prosecution agreement resolved to pay $24 million to settle the case. 

Tushar Manudhane, a pharma analyst with Motilal Oswal Financial Service Ltd, pointed out that this was an ongoing case and since Glenmark was defending its position the outcome was a 50 per cent possibility either way. 

Glenmark shares ended closed at ₹435 on the BSE, a dip of over 3 per cent. 

 

Published on July 01, 2020
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