Is Novo Nordisk (NVO) Still a Buy?

September 23, 9:22 am

Renowned for its groundbreaking advancements in the pharmaceutical domain, Novo Nordisk ($NVO) has charted a remarkable journey since its inception in 1923. Specializing in combatting diabetes, obesity, growth hormone disorders, and bleeding disorders, the Denmark-based global healthcare company has emerged as a potential goldmine for investors, with its products reaching over 170 countries.

Promising Growth Trajectory

AltIndex's algorithm allocated a buy signal to Novo Nordisk (NVO) earlier this year, citing high employee satisfaction, a promising business outlook, and a spike in web traffic as the impetus behind this decision. These indicators not only reflect the company’s internal robustness but also the escalating public interest, paving the way for a potentially increased market share.

Since then the stock is up by 32% and the business outlook is still strong, outperforming many of the company's competitors. The public interest is also continuing to grow as can be seen in Google trends.

Flagship Drugs: Ozempic and Wegovy

Central to Novo Nordisk’s escalating popularity are two blockbuster drugs: Ozempic and Wegovy. Ozempic, a revolutionary treatment for type 2 diabetes and obesity, has demonstrated remarkable efficacy in controlling blood sugar levels, aiding weight loss, and reducing cardiovascular events. The company’s investment in expanding Ozempic's production and formulating new versions showcases the drug’s integral role in Novo Nordisk’s future growth.

Wegovy, another weight-loss drug, exemplifies the company’s innovative prowess. Despite facing supply constraints, Novo Nordisk is making strategic moves to enhance production, with the introduction of Wegovy in multiple European countries and the U.S., signaling a wider distribution in the near future.

Financial Fortitude and Expansion Plans

With a net profit of 39.2 billion Danish kroner ($5.5 billion) in the first half of 2023, marking a 43% YoY growth, and robust net sales growth of 29%, Novo Nordisk stands on a solid financial foundation. The company's plans to expand production in Denmark and possible investments in increasing manufacturing capacity underscore its commitment to meet the burgeoning demand for its top-selling assets.

Sustainable Practices and Global Reach

Novo Nordisk’s dedication to sustainability and improving healthcare access worldwide adds another feather to its cap. The company’s ambitious goals to reduce carbon emissions and harness renewable energy resonate with the growing investor preference for ethical and sustainable business practices.

Comparative Market Standing

In the fiercely competitive landscape of the pharmaceutical industry, Novo Nordisk has established a foothold, particularly in the realm of weight-loss solutions. Trading at 44 times its earnings, Novo Nordisk offers an intriguing value proposition for investors. When juxtaposed with a giant like Eli Lilly, which trades at a multiple around 80, Novo Nordisk emerges as a more economically accessible option, potentially providing a more balanced risk-reward profile.

Eli Lilly has also been making waves in the weight-loss industry, primarily due to the efficacy of tirzepatide in aiding weight loss. However, the substantial difference in trading multiples between the two companies highlights the comparative affordability of Novo Nordisk. Despite this difference in valuation, Novo Nordisk does not fall short in terms of innovation and growth potential, evidenced by the success and popularity of Ozempic and Wegovy.

Moreover, the vastness of the weight-loss industry allows multiple players to coexist and thrive. The global escalation in diabetes and obesity cases underscores the expanding market, which is large enough to accommodate the growth aspirations of both Novo Nordisk and its competitors. The industry’s expansive nature signals that Novo Nordisk has ample room to navigate, innovate, and grow, even amidst the presence of formidable competitors.

Addressing Challenges

The journey is not without hurdles. Recent FDA inspections revealed “objectionable” bacteria in several batches of the diabetes pill Rybelsus. However, Novo Nordisk has promptly addressed the FDA’s observations, with corrective actions in place, ensuring the continued quality of drug products manufactured.


Novo Nordisk, with its diversified portfolio, innovative pipeline, and strong market position, exemplifies a promising investment avenue. While challenges exist, the company’s proactive approach, commitment to sustainability, and strategic expansion plans spotlight its potential for sustained growth. Investors looking to tap into the pharmaceutical industry’s potential might find Novo Nordisk a worthy contender, but as with any investment, a careful consideration of risks and individual investment goals is imperative.

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