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Biotech Stocks Review: Gilead Stocks see an Unexpected Drop

Shares of Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ GILD) dropped 1.4% to close the trading session on Sep 5 at $105.36 following a Bloomberg report claiming that the biopharmaceutical major will ink a licensing deal with generic players in order to make its blockbuster hepatitis C drug Sovaldi available in approximately 80 developing nations such as India and Pakistan at low cost.

According to the report, Gilead is very close to completing the licensing deal which will permit generic players to make Sovaldi and one more candidate combining Sovaldi with another of Gilead’s hepatitis treatment. The deal could come into effect from the middle of this month. Gilead is currently in talks with generic players including Mylan (MYL).

The Bloomberg report further stated that the company intends to market the branded version of Sovaldi in the developing nations for as low as $900 for a 12-week course. The drug, which gained FDA approval in Dec 2013, is priced much higher in the U.S. ($84,000 for a 12-week course).

Biotech Stock News

The high price tag of Sovaldi in the U.S. has attracted criticisms from various quarters. The latest controversy erupted in July this year when two members of the U.S. Senate Finance Committee issued a letter to Gilead asking it to justify Sovaldi’s high U.S. price.

One of the points raised in the letter was the rationale behind the substantial discount offered on Sovaldi’s price in countries like Egypt. Similarly, if steep discounts are offered on Sovaldi’s price in low-income countries like India, it will once again stir up the hornet’s nest in the U.S. We expect investor to remain on updates regarding the issue.

Biotech Financial News

Gilead is rumored to be close to sealing a deal under which its high-priced HCV treatment, Sovaldi, will be provided at a huge discount to 80 developing countries including India and Pakistan. According to a Bloomberg report, Sovaldi could be sold for as less as $900 for a 12-week course.

This is in stark contrast to the drug’s $84,000 price tag in the U.S. for the same period of treatment. Gilead’s shares were down on concerns that this steep discount may once again lead to questions being raised about the drug’s high price tag in the U.S.

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