JP Morgan – Monday Afternoon
Without question the highlight of the afternoon presentations was Amylin (NASDAQ:AMLN). In perhaps the best presentation of the day the company clearly laid out their strategy for 2010 and it should surprise no one that Byetta LAR is the centerpiece of this strategy. To their credit the company is not sitting around waiting for the FDA to approve LAR, as they have embarked on an aggressive clinical program designed to prove that Byetta LAR is superior to current therapy options including Victoza®.
About the only real surprise came during the breakout session when the company faced a rather timid group of questions. Of course there were the expected questions about pancreatitis yet nothing really juicy. Although Diabetic Investor can’t say for certain either the group is beginning to believe that LAR is truly a paradigm changing technology or they were a little tired from being in presentations all day. Given there have no hiccups with the FDA and everything seems to be full speed ahead, something which is in stark contrast to the problems Novo Nordisk (NYSE:NVO) is having getting Victoza through the FDA, perhaps everyone is finally coming around to something Diabetic Investor has know all along; Byetta LAR is game changing technology.
With just two months until the PDUFA date Amylin is in great position to clear another hurdle and bring LAR to market. Once this event occurs the finish line will be in site and it will all come down to execution.
One has to wonder what the folks at Novo are thinking at this moment, as they still can’t say for sure when, or even if, Victoza will be on the market. In reality it really doesn’t matter as we have said all along, once weekly administration trumps once daily and yes it is that simple.
Our second award goes to a company that isn’t even presenting at the conference; Intuity Medical. As Diabetic Investor reported before the conference started Intuity just raised $64 million. While this event may seem insignificant to some consider the following:
1. The glucose monitoring market is in decline.
2. The Big Four are laying off people at an increasing rate.
3. The Intuity product while evolutionary is not revolutionary.
4. 2009 wasn’t actually an easy year for any company to raise money.
Frankly what Intuity has done is nothing short of a miracle when one takes a realistic look at the future of BGM.
While the $64 million does not guarantee anything, Diabetic Investor believes the company and their new investors have a realistic view on what lies ahead. They understand the market dynamics and unlike others in the space they actually have a strategy. Actually in some respects their story isn’t that different than what Amylin is doing with LAR, as patients prefer simplicity whether it’s the therapy regimen or how they monitor their glucose. The fact is an all-in-one device makes perfect sense and has for some time. The problem is until Intuity came along no one has been able to make it work.