Three Lek brands among Slovenia's most respected

Superbrand awards for Lek, Lekadol<sup>&reg;</sup> and Persen<sup>&reg;</sup>

30. 1. 2009

Ljubljana, January 30 – Lek, a Sandoz company, won three Superbrand awards at the Superbrands Slovenia 2008 awards ceremony at the Ljubljana Castle, for our brands Lek, Lekadol and Persen. This ranks us among the strongest domestic and foreign brands on the Slovenian market. A full 800 domestic and foreign brands made it to the list of finalists vying for the title of Superbrand this year.

The list of 800 finalists was determined in cooperation with leading Slovenian market research agencies. The evaluation for the determination of the prizes was performed by an expert panel made up of 53 marketing experts and representatives of the academic community, associations and the media. They voted for the best brands on the basis of brand recognition, reputation, quality, reliability and long-term consistency. Forty of the strongest brands on the Slovenian market were presented at the awards ceremony, of which 32 were Slovenian in origin.

Upon receiving the awards, Tatjana Klančnik Breznikar, Head of OTC in Slovenia, who is also in charge of global OTC development at Sandoz, said: “We at Lek are proud to have created brands which both professionals and the general public recognize and trust. In the pharmaceutical industry, a strong, recognizable and trustworthy brand is becoming an increasingly important success factor. Therefore in addition to research and development, which are prerequisites to offering high-quality and modern products, it is also necessary to invest in market analyses and prepare marketing and communications strategies which create excellence.”

Lekadol and Persen have been among our most recognizable brands for many years. The brand recognition of Lekadol, which celebrated it fifteenth birthday in 2007, is nearly 100 percent in its target group. Persen is one of the most recognized plant-based sedatives in Slovenia. It holds the leading market share in Slovenia, Southeast Europe, Russia, Ukraine, Poland and Kazakhstan. The Superbrand award is also very important for the Lek corporate brand, as its puts Lek among the strongest Slovenian companies in terms of reputation and public recognition.

Lek also won Superbrand awards in 2007, for the Lek and Persen brands, and 2008, for the Lekadol and Persen brands. In 2007, Persen and Immunal also received Superbrand awards in Russia, which confirms the strong position of our brands on foreign markets.

Lek has received several awards for its marketing/communications activities for its brands:
- in 2002 we received a silver medal for effective advertising for our campaign for Lekadol plus C at the first Slovenian Festival of Effective Advertising – EFFIE,
- in 2004 we received an EFFIE bronze medal for Angal, double relief for sore throat
- in 2007 we received a Trusted Brand award in Slovenia for the Lekadol brand in two categories: pain relief tablets and flu and cold tablets
- in 2008 we received a Trusted Brand award in Slovenia for the Lekadol brand in two categories: pain relief tablets and flu and cold tablets

The international organization Superbrands is an independent global authority in the field of branding, whose goal is to identify and promote leading brands on individual markets and thereby further develop the discipline of branding. It is present in 82 countries around the world.

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Lek, a Sandoz company, is one of the pillars of leading world generics company Sandoz. It operates as a global development center for products and technologies, as a global manufacturing center for active pharmaceutical ingredients and medicines, as a competence center for the development of vertically integrated products, as a Sandoz competence center in the field of development and manufacturing of biopharmaceutical products and as a supply center for the markets of CEE, SEE and CIS, sales Slovenia and sales services for Sandoz’s global markets. Lek d.d. employs about 2,820 people and achieved total sales of USD 904 million in 2006. For further information please consult

Sandoz, a Division of the Novartis group, is a global leader in the field of generic pharmaceuticals, offering a wide array of high-quality, affordable products that are no longer protected by patents. Sandoz has a portfolio of more than 840 active substances in over 5 000 forms worldwide. Key product groups include antibiotics, treatments for central nervous system disorders, gastrointestinal medicines, cardiovascular treatments and hormone therapies. Sandoz develops, produces and markets these drugs along with pharmaceutical and biotechnological active substances and anti-infectives. In addition to the strong organic growth in recent years, Sandoz has made a series of acquisitions including Lek (Slovenia), Sabex (Canada), Hexal (Germany) and EonLabs (U.S.) and sells its products in more than 110 countries. In 2006, Sandoz employed around 21,000 people worldwide and posted sales of USD 6 billion.

Novartis AG (NYSE: NVS) is a world leader in offering medicines to protect health, cure disease and improve well-being. Our goal is to discover, develop and successfully market innovative products to treat patients, ease suffering and enhance the quality of life. Novartis is the only company with leadership positions in both patented and generic pharmaceuticals. We are strengthening our medicine-based portfolio, which is focused on strategic growth platforms in innovation-driven pharmaceuticals, high-quality and low-cost generics and leading self-medication OTC brands. In 2006, the Group’s businesses achieved net sales of USD 37.0 billion and net income of USD 7.2 billion. Approximately USD 5.4 billion was invested in R&D. Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Novartis Group companies employ approximately 101,000 people and operate in over 140 countries around the world. For more information, please visit

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This press release contains statements and conclusions based on projections of Lek’s future business operations. These estimates are derived from the best information currently available. In case these forecasts prove unreliable, the actual results could prove different from those projected.

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For further information contact:

Katarina Klemenc Dinjaški

Corporate Communications

Lek Pharmaceuticals d.d.

Phone: + 386 1 580 22 43

Fax: + 386 1 580 24 32