WHEN: Today, Thursday, December 15th
WHERE: CNBC's "Closing Bell"
Following are excerpts from the unofficial transcript of a CNBC EXCLUSVE interview with Valeant CEO Joseph Papa on CNBC's "Closing Bell" (M-F, 3PM-5PM ET) today, Thursday, December 15th. Following is a link to the video on CNBC.com: http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000576645.
All references must be sourced to CNBC.
PAPA ON PRICING POLICY
We came forward with a pricing policy. That policy was meant to really take a look at what had happened in the past and, importantly, not repeat the mistakes of the past. So we have a pricing policy that will stay single-digit pricing and be within the pharmaceutical average and we will avoid some of the issues that occurred in the past.
PAPA ON PATIENT ACCESS
In the past, we had some specialty pharmacy relationships that we worked on. But we very much now are focused on what I would call conventional pharmaceutical marketing programs, patient access programs, working with all the large PVMs. So we have come full circle and have come right back to what really is the bread and butter activities of pharmaceutical companies. And that's really the focus for us for the future. Continuing to make sure our patients have access to the product. We have come up with a very novel agreement with Walgreens, which allows the patients, especially the dermatology and ophthalmology patients, get access for our products. We're trying to come up with some new innovation to help patients make our products accessible.
PAPA ON BILL ACKMAN
Bill has been – and the ValueAct team – have been wonderful shareholders and, importantly, they have been part of our board of directors. They have great comments and they've been helpful to me as I joined. It's only been about seven months for me now, but certainly it's been a chance to really rebuild the team, rebuild the product portfolio especially the new products. And also, take some activities to try to pay down debt. We are going to operationally improve to pay down debt, but we're also looking at selling some non-core assets to help pay down debt. And that's something we've been working very closely with Bill.
PAPA ON PAYING DOWN DEBT
We have $30 billion of debt. I always said that we're going to build around this core. If though there is inbound interest that comes to us, and said we'd be very interested in some of these great assets you have, I have to listen at this time…But importantly, I've started the process with these non-core assets and that's where I think we can help pay down some debt. I talked about we expect to pay down approximately $5 billion of debt over the next 18 months predominantly from both the operational improvement as well as some of these non-core asset sales, and that's right on track. And we said it would take about six months and as we approach the first quarter, I'm very optimistic we'll get that done.
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