As we wait for Mar expiry and the addition of AMLN to the NASDAQ Q-50 I have been thinking about the needle size that Bydureon (or what ever it is called) requires. Apparently, I have a much greater concern for the needle effect than you do. I do not think it can be argued that there was/is not strong negative injection effect on Byetta adoption . It has always been claimed that the "tiny" and thus virtually painless skin pricks from the Byetta pen should not disuade a type two diabetic from using a demonstrably superior treatment. Well it does and it has. Of course, there have been concurrent negative factors like management blunders if only for failing to adequately ie. aggressively respond to FUD in the media.
In short, I think there might be much greater resistance to a less frequent but bigger needle . If even skilled practitioners might produce bruising at the injection site then the new potential client faces, IMO, a very large self-administration hurdle. One can shout about efficacy all they want but I think it folly to discount the negative effect of a much larger needle. Any needle has proven problematic towards sales. A much larger needle will also be problematic - the question is if it will be more so.
Surely, current BID users will be inclined towards a QW dosage; but new users? I have my doubts. I just do not think the "needle problem" will get smaller as the needle gets larger. On top of all of the psychological needle stuff there is the fact that AMLN is now entering a distinctly new phase of valuation. A safe assumption is that Bydureon will "soon" be approved for sale. At that point share price will be driven by earnings and earnings will depend upon sales. I have seen reasonable and well reasoned estimates that sales of Byetta AND Bydureon will be in the neighborhood of 1.8 - 1.9 billion in 2014 with Bydureon largely cannabalizing Byetta sales. On a simple price/sales ratio AMLN share price would come in at around $45 in 2014. (BTW, AMLN's patents expire in 2017). Even if AMLN is a triple in 2014 rather than a double there are huge opportunity costs as there has always been with AMLN (since 1992 for Kryse Sakes!)
You can throw in notions about the obseity treatments but those are over the horizon. I still think a buy-out is highly unlikely. A partial list of reasons is mentioned above. Lastly and contrary to the choir I am convinced that Amylin management's largest skill is in finding and hitting every pot hole on the road to profitability or, in Danny's World - Positive Cash Flow. Given all of that and several other considerations I have decided to take off half my position after any price effect due to the Q-50 addition and, of course, the abatement of triple-witching noise. I am going to write calls on the remaining half. I have great confidence in the efficacy of Exenatide. I have virtually no confidence that the genuises in San Diego are up to a marketing task that will be (no pun intended) even larger than the previous task.
Farmers on the Indian Subcontinent devised an ingenious trap for catching feral monkeys that pillage their crops. They hang a cage with a tempting piece of fruit in it from a tree. The cage is constructed so a monkey can reach between the bars and grasp the fruit but the bars are too closely spaced to allow the fruit to be freed. Monkeys will comonly fail to let go of the fruit prize even as the farmer approaches with a dispatching club.