Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Amarin Pulls Back Sales Force Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

By Mark Prvulovic - Mar 16, 2020 at 5:34PM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

Companies are doing everything they can to minimize in-person contact.

Biopharma company Amarin's (AMRN -1.62%) recently approved fish-oil-based drug, Vascepa -- its sole product -- is expected by many analysts to become a blockbuster treatment for people at risk of heart attacks and strokes. However, with the COVID-19 pandemic dominating most people's concerns, the company announced Monday that it would be withdrawing its field sales force until March 30.

The biotech company had originally planned to heavily promote Vascepa in 2020, and had doubled its sales force to around 800 in preparation for the expected sales push. However, many analysts are now expecting that Vascepa sales will flatten or possibly decline in the next quarter or two as COVID-19 holds the attention of patients and physicians, and worries like high triglycerides seem less pressing.

A businessperson working in his home office.

Image source: Getty Images.

Back in December, the Food and Drug Administration approved Vascepa as an add-on therapy to conventional cholesterol-lowering drugs. Clinical results had shown that patients who took Vascepa had a reduced chance of suffering either a heart attack or a stroke.

Is working remotely the new norm?

Amarin's decision to pull back its sales force appears to be in line with the direction that the rest of the healthcare sector is moving. Pfizer announced Friday that its entire sales force will be working remotely due to COVID-19 concerns. Novartis also asked its workforce in the U.S., Canada, and Europe to work from home for the next three weeks, with the exception of manufacturing workers and R&D lab staff. Bristol Myers Squibb made a similar announcement, asking all employees and contractors who can work at home to do so.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

Amarin Corporation plc Stock Quote
Amarin Corporation plc
AMRN
$1.82 (-1.62%) $0.03

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
319%
 
S&P 500 Returns
112%

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 06/29/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.