Zenith CC&P Current Awareness

CMA consults on Aspen pay for delay settlement

15 August 2019

Prof. Suzanne Rab

Zenith's Suzanne Rab writes:

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is consulting on proposed commitments from Aspen relating to supply of fludrocortisone acetate tablets in the UK.  Aspen has offered to pay the NHS £8m, as part of a wider package of commitments addressed at competition concerns.

The investigation arises from Aspen’s acquisition in 2016 of additional marketing authorisation for the drug in circumstances where it already held the only other authorisation for competing drugs. The CMA maintains that the acquisition strengthened Aspen’s dominant position.

According to the CMA, in 2015 Tiofarma became a competitor to Aspen.  As part of Aspen’s acquisition from Tiofarma of the worldwide and UK rights over the drug, Tiofarma entered a non-compete as well as a supply agreement under which it agreed to supply ambient storage fludrocortisone to Aspen and Aspen agreed to purchase all its requirements of ambient storage fludrocortisone only from Tiofarma for a period of five years.

The CMA has concerns that the arrangements infringe Article 102 TFEU and the Chapter II prohibition.

Aspen has offered to divest its UK rights over ambient storage fludrocortisone to an independent third-party and re-introduce and commercialise its other fludrocortisone product in the UK.

The CMA invites comments by 2 September 2019.

Current Awareness

By the CC&P team