Aspen has recently been in the news due to its ownership of the rights to a treatment that may be helpful in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The pharmaceutical giant has had a renewed boost of its reputation over the last month after the group fell from grace in the last few years. Its heightened popularity is related to the group’s ability to produce a medication (dexamethasone) that may be helpful in the fight against COVID-19.
The group confirmed that it owns the rights to dexamethasone and currently distributes the medication in several countries. In a trading update in May, the group also said it has seen increased demand for some of its products in Europe due to the pandemic, as well as stocking piling of healthcare products and advanced filling of prescriptions.
The recent news coincides with a turn in fortunes for the company, which has seen its share price fall more than 50% over the last 3 years. The group has been selling non-core assets over the last year in order to reduce its debt levels. The divestment in its Japanese operations earlier this year for around R4.4 billion is part of this strategy, as well as a strategy to focus the business on the core pharmaceuticals business in markets where the group has an edge.