Back to top

Analyst Blog

VIVUS, Inc. (VVUS - Analyst Report) recently announced that Anthony Zook, who was appointed as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the company in Jul 2013 has resigned due to health concerns. Investors have reacted negatively to the news.

VIVUS appointed Seth H. Z. Fischer as its CEO effective immediately. He will also join the VIVUS Board of Directors. Previously, Fischer served as a senior executive at Johnson & Johnson (JNJ - Analyst Report).

The new CEO has his work cut out for him. The company’s lead product, Qsymia, has performed disappointingly since launch in Sep 2012. Qsymia revenues in the second quarter of 2013 were $5.5 million as compared to $4.1 million recorded in the first quarter of 2013.

We remind investors that Qsymia was launched in the U.S. in Sep 2012. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) cleared Qsymia in Jul 2012 as an adjunct to a healthy diet (low on calories) and increased physical activity for chronic weight management in obese (Body Mass Index, or BMI - 30 or more) or overweight (BMI - 27 or more) adults suffering from at least one weight-related co-morbid condition.

On Apr 16, 2013, the FDA approved an amendment and modification to the Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) of Qsymia. As per the modification to the REMS, Qsymia can now be distributed through certified retail pharmacies apart from the existing certified mail-order pharmacy network. The company announced retail availability on Jul 1, 2013.

We remind investors that apart from Qsymia, another weight-loss drug, Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc.’s (ARNA - Snapshot Report) Belviq, received approval in the U.S. last year. Belviq was launched in the U.S. in Jun 2013.

Apart from Qsymia, VIVUS’ portfolio consists of another approved product, Stendra, for erectile dysfunction (ED), which received approval in the U.S. in Apr 2012 and in the EU in Jun 2013. The company is looking for a partner in the U.S.

VIVUS, a biopharmaceutical company, currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Biopharma companies that currently look attractive include Jazz Pharmaceuticals (JAZZ - Analyst Report) with a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

Please login to Zacks.com or register to post a comment.

New to Zacks?

Start Here

Zacks Investment Research

Close

Are you a new Zacks Member or a visitor to Zacks.com?

Top Zacks Features

My Portfolio Tracker

Is it Time to Sell?

One of the most important steps you can take today is to set up your portfolio tracker on Zacks.com. Once you do, you'll be notified of major events affecting your stocks and/or funds with daily email alerts.

More Zacks Resources

Zacks Rank Home - Evaluate your stocks and use the Zacks Rank to eliminate the losers and keep the winners.

Mutual Fund Rank Home - Evaluate your funds with the Mutual Fund Rank for both your personal and retirement funds.

Stock/Mutual Fund Screening - Find better stocks and mutual funds. The ones most likely to beat the market and provide a positive return.

My Portfolio - Track your Portfolio and find out where your stocks/mutual funds stack up with the Zacks Rank.

Zacks #1 Rank Top Movers for Zacks #1 Rank Top Movers

Company Symbol Price %Chg
RPC INC RES 24.91 +8.35%
LITHIA MOTO… LAD 94.59 +4.60%
DELTA AIR L… DAL 39.15 +3.90%
FLAMEL TECH… FLML 14.51 +3.50%
SOUTHWEST A… LUV 28.87 +2.92%