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Prilosec switch

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Status of Astra Merck agreement with Procter & Gamble for the Rx-to-OTC switch of the proton pump inhibitor omeprazole is one issue posed by the possible dissolution of the joint venture reportedly under discussion between the Swedish company and Merck. The agreement with P&G was announced in December ("The Tan Sheet" Dec. 22, 1997, p. 2). By exiting the joint venture now, Merck could replace the revenue stream from Prilosec with break-up fees from Astra. For Astra, exiting the joint venture would give the company the freedom to pursue a strategic move without the hindrance of the U.S. licensing agreement to the Merck joint venture...

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