AstraZeneca beats expectations, despite patent expiries

Hannah Blake

pharmaphorum

AstraZeneca has announced its Q3 financial results, which despite loss of exclusivity in some of its key brands, were better-than-expected. AZ has maintained its core earnings per share (EPS) target as defined by the company, for the full year. These are the first results for CEO, Pascal Soriot, since he took on his new role on October 1st 2012.

Britain’s second-biggest pharmaceutical company took a hit this quarter, with sales revenue down 19%. This slump was largely attributed by the expiry of patents on key drugs, including the loss of patent protection in the US for schizophrenia drug, Seroquel IR (quetiapine). Revenue in Western Europe decreased by 29%, as AZ continues to focus its increasing sales in the emerging markets, where revenue slipped only 1%. In China, revenues rose by 24%.

“As expected, the Company’s financial performance in 2012 largely reflects the ongoing impact from the loss of exclusivity for several brands in key markets, as well as the challenges that confront the pharmaceutical industry as a whole. Since joining AstraZeneca, I’ve been deeply impressed by the commitment, talent and passion of our people and by their determination to deliver against our targets. As I take up my new role as Chief Executive, my priority is to restore the Company to growth and scientific leadership.”

Pascal Soriot, Chief Executive Officer, comments on the results.

AZ is confident it will continue to drive future growth and value and has not adjusted its financial expectations for full-year 2012.

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Related news:

New CEO has work cut out as AstraZeneca sales fall (Reuters)

AstraZeneca sales hurt by patent expiries (The Telegraph)

Reference links:

AstraZeneca press release

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