This excerpt taken from the ENDP 10-K filed Mar 2, 2009.
The Company conducts its business within the pharmaceutical industry, which is highly competitive and subject to numerous government regulations. Many competitive factors may significantly affect the Companys sales of its products, including product efficacy, safety, price and cost-effectiveness, marketing effectiveness, product labeling, quality control and quality assurance at our third-party manufacturing operations, and research and development of new products. To successfully compete for business in the health care industry, the Company must demonstrate that its products offer medical benefits as well as cost advantages. Currently, most of the Companys products compete with other products already on the market in the same therapeutic category, in addition to potential competition of new products that competitors may introduce in the future. The Company manufactures branded products, which are priced higher than generic products. Generic competition is one of the Companys leading challenges.
In the pharmaceutical industry, the majority of an innovative products commercial value is usually realized during the period that the product has market exclusivity. When a product loses exclusivity, it is no longer protected by a patent and is subject to new competing products in the form of generic brands. Upon exclusivity loss, the Company can lose a major portion of that products sales in a short period of time. Intellectual property rights have increasingly come under attack in the current healthcare environment. Generic drug firms have filed
Abbreviated New Drug Applications (ANDAs) seeking to market generic forms of certain of the Companys key pharmaceutical products, prior to expiration of the applicable patents covering those products. In the event the Company is not successful in defending the patent claims challenged in ANDA filings, the generic firms will then introduce generic versions of the product at issue, resulting in the potential for substantial market share and revenue losses for that product. For a complete description of legal proceedings, see Note 15 of the Consolidated Financial Statements included in Part IV, Item 15 of this Annual Report on Form 10-K.
The health care industry is subject to various government-imposed regulations authorizing prices or price controls that have and will continue to have an impact on the Companys sales. The U.S. Congress and some state legislatures have considered a number of proposals and have enacted laws that could result in major changes in the current health care system, either nationally or at the state level. Driven in part by budget concerns, Medicaid access and reimbursement restrictions have been implemented in some states and proposed in many others. In addition, the Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act provides outpatient prescription drug coverage to senior citizens in the U.S. This legislation has had a modest favorable impact on the Company as a result of an increase in the number of seniors with drug coverage. At the same time, there continues to be a potential negative impact on the U.S. pharmaceutical business that could result from pricing pressures or controls.
The growth of Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) in the U.S. has increased competition in the healthcare industry. MCOs seek to reduce healthcare expenditures for participants by making volume purchases and entering into long-term contracts to negotiate discounts with various pharmaceutical providers. Because of the market potential created by the large pool of participants, marketing prescription drugs to MCOs has become an important part of the Companys strategy. Companies compete for inclusion in MCO formularies and the Company generally has been successful in having its major products included. The Company believes that developments in the managed care industry, including continued consolidation, have had and will continue to have a generally downward pressure on prices.
Changes in the behavior and spending patterns of purchasers of health care products and services, including delaying medical procedures, rationing prescription medications, reducing the frequency of physician visits and foregoing health care insurance coverage, as a result of the current global economic downturn may impact the Companys business.
Pharmaceutical production processes are complex, highly regulated and vary widely from product to product. We contract with various third party manufacturers and suppliers to provide us with raw materials used in our products and finished goods. Our most significant agreements are with Novartis Consumer Health, Inc., Teikoku Seiyaku Co., Ltd., Mallinckrodt Inc., Almac Pharma Services and Sharp Corporation. Shifting or adding manufacturing capacity can be a lengthy process that could require significant expenditures and regulatory approvals. If for any reason we are unable to obtain sufficient quantities of any of the finished goods or raw materials or components required for our products, it could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.
The Company has maintained a competitive position in the market and strives to uphold this position, which is dependent on its success in discovering and developing innovative, cost-effective products that serve unmet medical need.