NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Nov. 30 was a big day in the drug industry. For years it's been marked in the calendars of generic drug makers, Wall Street analysts, and of course, Pfizer ( PFE), which lost exclusivity of its most successful drug, the cholesterol fighter Lipitor, on that date. Now the Dow component is trying to hang onto market share, offering direct mailing of the medication through its Web site and working with insurance companies to offer Lipitor at a discounted price, but Wall Street seems to see this as a losing battle. "Everyone's numbers have taken Lipitor out," said Miller Tabak's Les Funtleyder, referring to the financial projections of his fellow analysts. Once a drug's patent expires, there is a six-month exclusivity period where the generic company that files first is able to produce its version. Pfizer made a deal with Watson Phamaceuticals ( WPI) where Pfizer makes and supplies Watson with an authorized generic version of Lipitor and Pfizer gets a portion of the sales. This agreement lasts until Nov. 30, 2016. Pfizer and Watson are competing with Teva Pharmaceutical ( TEVA) which has an agreement with Indian drug maker Ranbaxy, who was first to file. Teva gets some of Ranbaxy's profits from the sale of its generic version of Lipitor called Atorvastatin. Some analysts estimate that Pfizer may be able to hold onto as much as 40% market share in the six-month exclusivity period. At the discounted price that Lipitor is being sold, the company stands to make $1 billion in revenue in that six-month time frame, according to Jeff Jonas, an analyst at Gabelli. Once that six months ends though, Jonas expects Pfizer to see only a "token amount of revenue" coming from consumers who "absolutely insist on the brand." So what's the future of Pfizer beyond Lipitor? The company expects "rapid erosion of Lipitor revenue and volume share in the U.S.," according to a spokeswoman, adding that in other markets the decline "may be more gradual." Pfizer is hoping revenue from new products such as Enbrel, a treatment for autoimmune disorders, Lurica, a fybromyalgia drug, and Prevnar 13, a pediatric vaccine for pneumococcal bacteria, will pick up some of the slack in 2012. It's also counting on topline contributions from the product portfolio of King Pharmaceuticals, which was acquired earlier in 2011.
More growth could come from additional acquisitions. The company has made five deals this year alone. Gabelli's Jonas also points to Pfizer's partnership with Bristol-Myers Squibb ( BMY) for Eliquis as potentially generating more than $3 billion in annual sales to be split between the two companies. The drug, which is used in atrial fibrillation, is currently under priority review by the FDA and Jonas anticipates a decision being made by the end of March. Those points aside, "Near-term, nothing will make up for the loss of Lipitor," Jonas said. "It's even too late to acquire something to try to fix it ... You've not going to see really great growth from this company through 2015." Pfizer's own outlook for fiscal 2012 reflects this as the company is targeting revenue of $62.2 billion to $64.7 billion, down from its projection for revenue of $66.2 billion and $67.2 billion for fiscal 2011, which ends this month. So why own the stock in the meantime? Jonas cited Pfizer's quarterly dividend of 20 cents a share, which translates to a forward annual dividend yield of 4% at current stock levels. That's more than double what the 10-year Treasury bond is paying these days. Jonas also notes that the company's valuation lags most of its peers. Pfizer trades at a little less than 9X the consensus estimate for earnings of $2.31 per share in fiscal 2012. Bristol-Myers Squibb has a forward P-E ratio of 16.7X, while Merck's P-E ratio sits at 9.3X, and GlaxoSmithKline ( GSK) trades at 12.8X. Pfizer shares were trading at $20.55 in afternoon action, up 1.7%. -- Written by Alexandra Zendrian in New York. >To contact the writer of this article, click here: Alexandra Zendrian >To submit a news tip, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. >To follow the writer on Twitter, go to Alexandra Zendrian.