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Zealand Pharma Advances on Diabetes Drug Bets: Copenhagen Mover

Jan. 23 (Bloomberg) -- Zealand Pharma A/S rose to the highest price in almost two months in Copenhagen trading on bets the Danish drugmaker’s partnership with Sanofi on a diabetes treatment will boost profits.

Zealand advanced as much as 2.6 percent to 98.50 kroner, the highest since Nov. 26. The stock rose 2.1 percent to 98 kroner at 12:45 p.m. local time with trading volume at 4 1/2 times the three-month daily average.

Zealand, based in Glostrup, Denmark, and Sanofi won European Union backing in November for their Lyxumia diabetes treatment, which mimics the function of a digestive hormone to stimulate insulin production. Paris-based Oddo & Cie. started covering Zealand today with a recommendation clients buy the stock because it offers investors a way into the growing market for treatment of the disease.

“Investing in Zealand means investing specifically in Sanofi’s diabetes theme,” the French bank said in a note. Given “the epidemiological forecasts for this condition,” it’s a lucrative prospect, it said.

Diabetes will strike one in 10 adults by 2030, the International Diabetes Federation said in a November 2011 report. Oddo also today recommended investors buy Paris-based Sanofi’s stock.

Danske Bank A/S, based in Copenhagen, today repeated its buy rating on Zealand shares, saying it expects “a very aggressive launch” of Lyxumia in the U.K.

Odde’s advice to buy the stock brings to five the number of analysts with a positive recommendation, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Two analysts have a hold recommendation.

To contact the reporter on this story: Christian Wienberg in Copenhagen at cwienberg@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Tasneem Brogger at tbrogger@bloomberg.net

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