When the pharmacist asks you if a generic equivalent is acceptable, Teva hopes you'll say "yes." Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, the US subsidiary of massive Israeli generic drug maker Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, develops, manufactures, and markets both generic and branded pharmaceuticals. The company is the largest manufacturer of generic drugs in the US; its product roster boasts more than 400 generic equivalents of prescription drugs in a wide variety of therapeutic categories, including cardiovascular, anti-inflammatory, anti-infective, oncology, central nervous system, and dermatological. The company also produces over-the-counter (OTC) drugs and active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs).
Teva Pharmaceuticals USA accounts for more than 45% of its parent company's sales. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA itself gets almost half of its revenues from direct sales to drugstores and a third from drug wholesalers; other customers include mail-order pharmacies, distributors, and hospitals. It relies upon an in-house sales force that calls on purchasing agents for retailers and institutional buying groups.
Generics are still the parent company's largest source of revenues, but in 2011 Teva's US revenue streams flipped and branded drugs accounted for 54% of the $8.8 billion in sales. That was 6% less than the $9.4 billion the company enjoyed in 2010 and it came from a sharp drop in the sales of generic drugs that offset a jump in the sales of branded drugs. Generics sales plummeted 32% despite the launch of 17 new drugs, due to a constellation of factors including supply problems and a sinking spell that followed the 2010 launches of several new products.
The big jump in branded drugs came from sales of its multiple sclerosis drug Copaxone, and from Teva's 2011 acquisition of specialty drugmaker Cephalon. That deal brought in a fat portfolio of branded products sold in the US, and a robust pipeline of fresh drugs in development. A less prominent, but notable bump to the company's US revenues came from sales of OTC drugs to Procter & Gamble that were part of a freshly inked joint venture to sell products internationally.
The company still expects US demand for generics to continue to grow as the population ages and as the nation continues to look for ways to reduce escalating health care costs. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA keeps its pipeline pumping out generics and to that end, the company has more than 150 new generic drugs awaiting FDA approval at any given time. Along with performing its own research and development, the company forms alliances with other pharmaceutical firms to license and market generic versions of their branded drugs.
The company's roots go back to Lemmon Pharmaceutical Company, founded in 1945. Lemmon Pharmaceutical was acquired by Teva Pharmaceutical Industries in 1981.
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