The UK’s SkyePharma has announced its intentions to withdraw its shares from the Nasdaq stock exchange in the USA, saying that maintenance of the listing is not cost-effective.

The shares will be delisted before the end of May and means that SkyePharma will avoid having to comply with the US Security and Exchange Commission's tough reporting rules, notably the strict Sarbanes-Oxley Act To continue with the listing “would be expensive and burdensome…considering the limited benefits,” the company said, noting that its American Depositary Receipts will continue to trade over-the-counter in the USA.

Chief executive Frank Condella said that the USA “remains a very important market for SkyePharma,” but the time and expense associated with maintaining a second listing there “is not cost effective, given that the vast majority of our trading volume and liquidity is on the London Stock Exchange.” He added that this move will save costs “and enable management to spend more time in developing the business”.

SkyePharma joins a host of other companies who have chosen to get off the Nasdaq after stricter reporting rules were brought in following the Enron scandal. Fellow UK drug developer Vernalis is delisting its shares.