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Novo Nordisk benefits from strong insulin market

Shares in Novo Nordisk rise and outperform a negative market, as investors identify strong sales figures from sanofi-aventis as a sign that the insulin market is strengthening

Shares in Denmark-headquartered Novo Nordisk have risen and outperformed a negative market, as investors identified strong sales figures from its French competitor sanofi-aventis (S-A) as a sign that the insulin market is strengthening.

Shares in Novo Nordisk were up DKK 4.00 (USD 0.74) or 0.7 per cent to reach DKK 579 (USD 106.4), while the OMXC20 index fell 5.66 points or 1.1 per cent to 494.

Alm Brand analysts have said that Novo Nordisk's share price was boosted as S-A's sales figures strongly suggested that the US insulin market was growing. S-A's Q2 FY07 sales of Lantus (insulin glargine [rDNA origin] injection), a direct competitor with Novo Nordisk's Levemir (insulin detemir [rDNA origin] injection), were up 2.7 per cent higher than expected.

S-A is in the process of reducing the size of its US sales force. Conversely, Novo Nordisk's is expanding its sales personnel, which may help the firm maintain its US market standing, says Alm Brand.

1st August 2007

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