Valeant To Offer Discounts To Walgreens On a Range Of Branded Products

By Ciara LinnaneMarketWatch Pulse

Valeant Pharmaceuticals Inc. shares rallied in premarket trade Tuesday, after the company announced a 20-year agreement with Walgreens Boots Alliance inc. under which it will offer discounts on a range of its products. Valeant said it will cut pricing on its branded prescription-based skin and eye care products by 10%. The cut will be applied to the wholesale list prices and will be phased in over the next six to nine months. It will also cover the company's over-the-counter portfolio. The agreement "is designed to create a more efficient model to help lower costs while ensuring patients have convenient access to the products their doctors prescribe," Valeant said in a statement. The two companies have entered a separate agreement, under which Valeant will distribute more than 30 branded products at generic prices. The products will cover skin, eye, stomach and neurology and other therapeutic areas and will be available from the second half of 2016. Valeant said the price cuts will save the health care system up to $600 million in annual costs. Valeant shares are down 34% in the year so far, battered by accounting and pricing issues. The S&P 500 is down 1.8% in the same time frame.

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