Eisai to increase Belviq sales force

Share this article:
More reps may be needed to propel sales for Belviq
More reps may be needed to propel sales for Belviq

In an announcement Tuesday, Arena Pharmaceuticals said that Eisai will double the number of reps marketing weight-loss drug Belviq. The increased sales force of 200 contract reps will bring the total number of sales people touting the prescription slimmer to around 400 by December.

Arena said that the expanded sales team will allow Eisai to reach around 65,000 physicians, and reps will be approaching primary care doctors and endocrinologists among others.

Although Tuesday's announcement cites increased payer and PBM coverage as a reason for the sales push, the ramp-up also happens to follow a September 30 research note in which an analyst said the drug needed more bodies promoting it.

Despite alarms over obesity, the prescription weight-loss drug market has been a slow build. Some marketers have told MM&M that one of the challenges is that obesity is where depression was decades ago, and that the market needs to cultivate the perception that obesity is a disease that can be treated.

Meanwhile, although payers have been signing on, it's a movement that is still gaining momentum, and investors have repeatedly said a lackluster sales-force push is part of the problem. Both Eisai and competitor Vivus have been criticized for depending on too few people to promote their products.

Share this article:

Email Newsletters

More in News

Gilead reaps huge HCV sales, payer fury

Gilead reaps huge HCV sales, payer fury

Sovaldi's debut has been marked by plenty of criticism from payers and lawmakers, but the hep. C drug's launch, now confirmed to be the fastest of all time, has also ...

Bayer drug gets orphan label

Bayer drug gets orphan label

The FDA designation is for an experimental, inhaled form of ciprofloxacin intended to treat a rare lung condition.

Lilly's cancer drug ramu granted gastric indication

Lilly's cancer drug ramu granted gastric indication

Ramucirumab received FDA approval today in advanced gastric cancer, a nod that could translate into $600 million in peak sales.