Pfizer sues Sanofi-Aventis over Exubera marketing deal

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At least one of three co-marketing deals struck up before the
merger of Sanofi-Synthelabo and Aventis has turned out to be a thorn in the newly formed pharma's side.
Pfizer has filed lawsuits in the U.S. and Germany against Sanofi-Aventis for a ruling to enforce the "change-of-control" clause in the co-marketing agreement between the companies
for the inhaled insulin, Exubera.
Neither company was willing to answer whether Pfizer is seeking to
enforce the change- in-control clause to buy back sole rights to Exubera or force a Sanofi-Aventis buyout of the rights.
Calls to a Sanofi-Aventis spokeswoman requesting comment on the
lawsuit were referred to Pfizer. A spokesman for Pfizer said his company is seeking a judgment to support its view that the Sanofi-Aventis merger constituted a change-in-control as defined by the 1998 Exubera co-marketing agreement between
the companies.
In other co-marketing deals made before the merger, Sanofi-Aventis
has agreed on the terms of the copromotion deal with Procter &
Gamble for the osteoporosis drug Actonel, and will also retain the
rights to Altana's in-development asthma therapy Alvesco.
"We have a co-development and co-promotion agreement with
Aventis for the U.S.," said an Alvesco spokeswoman. "Once reaching the market, Sanofi-Aventis will book all U.S. sales of Alvesco and Altana will receive royalties on these sales.
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