Vivus Shareholder Pushes for Management Change

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Before you go close icon

A recent letter to shareholders from Vivus' largest stockholder, investment advisory firm First Manhattan and owner of an estimated 9.9% of Vivus' outstanding shares, outlines a list of reasons it believes shareholders should vote to oust the existing board of directors and management team of Vivus at its upcoming shareholder meeting, scheduled for July 15. First Manhattan also announced that should Vivus shareholders vote to remove current management, it intends to appoint former AstraZeneca executive Tony Zook as new CEO.

While First Manhattan lists multiple concerns involving Vivus management, including what it views as domestic marketing miscues and expense management issues, at the forefront is the contention that Vivus has mishandled the rollout of its obesity drug, Qsymia. According to First Manhattan, Qsymia's slow launch is "a direct consequence of the sitting board and management's failure to engage a primary care pharmaceutical partner in the pre-launch years."

In response to First Manhattan's concerns, Vivus has released its own letter to shareholders. Speaking directly to First Manhattan's concerns surrounding Qsymia, Vivus notes that "we have made significant progress in establishing obesity as a drug treatment category and broadening reimbursement coverage." The Vivus board of directors added, "Qsymia is a unique product, and we are confident that it will be a top-selling drug."

Vivus' letter to shareholders urges shareholders to ignore First Manhattan's proxy request and to vote in favor of its current board of directors and senior management team, adding, "The fate of the Qsymia opportunity is at stake." 

The article Vivus Shareholder Pushes for Management Change originally appeared on

Fool contributor Tim Brugger and The Motley Fool have no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Copyright © 1995 - 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Read Full Story

People are Reading