Celltrion Healthcare, a subsidiary of Celltrion, said Friday that it has succeeded in receiving a significant volume of orders from two major hospital associations in France for Herzuma (Ingredient: Trastuzumab), an anticancer antibody biosimilar.
Herzuma treats breast and gastric cancer.
The contract comes just two months after the company launched its drug in France. The order volume from these two institutions is equivalent to about 40 percent of the Trastuzumab market in France.
The size of the Trastuzumab market in France is about 350 billion won ($311.9 million) annually, making it the third largest market in Europe after Italy and Germany. Also, France has had a conservative stance toward biosimilars in the past, but recently, the government has shifted to biosimilar-friendly policies, which in turn has led the country to become a proving ground for the success of biosimilars in Europe.
Therefore, the company said, it believes it has laid down the cornerstone for the drug's success in Europe.
“Herzuma, a latecomer, dominated the bidding competition, which not only affirmed the benefits given to the first mover in the field but also enjoys the reliability, brand image, marketing capability, and distribution experience of medicines, demonstrating essential elements for market dominance,” a company official said.
Truxima (Ingredient: Rituximab), an anticancer antibody biosimilar for the treatment of hematologic malignancies launched in France before Herzuma, is also quickly expanding its market share.
In the bidding competition for rituximab medicines in France in the second half of last year, Truxima succeeded in winning bid at three major institutions and achieved a market share of 39 percent.
Remsima (Ingredient: Infliximab), an autoimmune diseases biosimilar, has also achieved 52 percent market share in France in the second quarter of this year, exceeding that of the original drug.
“Remsima and Truxima are leading the market as first movers, and Herzuma has successfully entered the French market based on trust from the medical community on the quality of Celltrion biosimilars,” the company official said.
Celltrion Healthcare and its partners have achieved significant results through customized marketing strategies and distribution know-how for each bidding agency, and the company will continue to do its best to expand Herzuma in the European market, the official added.