Monday, January 7, 2013

Vivus Shares Soar As Pill Prescriptions Jump 68 Percent

Shares of Vivus Inc (NASDAQ: VVUS) surged as much as 10% on Monday after the company disclosed in a regulatory filing that prescriptions for its flagship obesity drug Qsymia jumped 68% to 12,978 for the four weeks ending Dec. 21, 12 from 7,749 for the four weeks ending Nov. 23, 12. The company also upwardly revised its estimate for total prescriptions shipped for the four weeks ending Oct. 26, 2012 to 5,394 from the previously reported 4,904, stating that the adjustment is based on additional information provided from a certified prescribing pharmacy.

Qsymia was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, in July 2012. The Company sells Qsymia product in the U.S. through certified pharmacies in its Qsymia Home Delivery Network. Given the Company’s limited history of selling Qsymia and the lengthy product return period, the Company has not been able to reliably estimate expected returns of Qsymia at the time of shipment to the pharmacies. Therefore, the Company recognizes revenue when units are shipped by the pharmacies to patients through prescriptions, at which point, the product is not subject to return. The Company obtains the prescription fulfillment data directly from the pharmacies or their designated third party service providers to determine the amount of revenue to recognize.

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