Industry powerhouse Allergan filed a complaint this week against substantially smaller Canadian rival Prollenium Medical Technologies Inc., alleging it has been using Allergan’s patented technology without permission.
In order to improve customer satisfaction and decrease the pain experienced during filler injections, Allergan decided to introduce a small amount of local anaesthetic to its now wildly popular Juvéderm range. The addition has undoubtedly contributed to Juvéderm’s success of over $500 million in annual US sales for Allergan.
Allergan is now alleging that its competitor has infringed on two Juvéderm patents as part of Prollenium’s Revanesse Versa+ filler formulation. The filing states that the patents cover formulations of, and manufacturing methods for, the filler compositions that include the anaesthetic lidocaine. These include Juvéderm Ultra XC, Ultra Plus XC and Voluma XC.
Allergan is demanding patent royalties on the sales of Prollenium’s Revanesse Versa+, as well as an order blocking the product’s sales. Revanesse Versa+ was introduced to market on December 17th of last year.
According to Allergan’s Chief Executive Officer Brenton Saunders, medical aesthetics makes up around 27% of the company’s revenue, and the Juvéderm range is essentially leading the charge when it comes to their medical aesthetics offerings.
“We believe this market will double over the next five to six years,” Saunders said at the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference earlier this month. “We estimate we can get to 10 percent or 15 percent penetration in just a few years, and then very importantly, millennials.”
In another interview, Saunders also stated that the demand for Juvéderm has been growing more rapidly when compared alongside Botox in the past several years. “The Juvéderm brand will far surpass what we talk about Botox in terms of size and importance in medical aesthetics over the next several years,” he said.
According to Allergan’s last quarterly earnings report (released October 31st 2018), Juvéderm products took in a huge $389.8 million US during the first nine months 2018; which was an increase of 7.8 percent from the $361.6 million in sales over the same period in 2017.
Prollenium was founded in 2002, and offers dermal filler, PRP solutions, and medical-grade skincare. The company has yet to release a comment regarding the lawsuit.
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