Pharma sales for Merck & Co decline 4% in Q3
Worldwide pharmaceutical sales for Merck & Co declined by 4% to US $9.5 billion in the third quarter of 2013. This was largely attributed by the loss of market exclusivity from asthma medicine Singulair (montelukast sodium), migraine drug Maxalt (rizatriptan benzoate), brain tumour treatment Temodar (temozolomide) and high blood pressure drug Cozaar (losartan potassium).
However, this decline was partially offset by strong growth of Merck & Co’s chronic plaque psoriasis drug, Remicade (infliximab), HPV vaccine Gardasil and rheumatoid arthritis drug Simponi.
While sales from emerging markets decreased by 4 %, they accounted for approximately 20 % of the pharmaceutical sales in the third quarter of 2013. There was strong growth in Brazil, Korea, Russia and Turkey, which offset declines in China and Mexico.
“This quarter we delivered solid financial results, with strong contributions from our vaccine, immunology and HIV businesses, and effective cost management. We are improving productivity and focusing our R&D and commercial resources more precisely to enable our investments in the best opportunities for innovation and growth. We are encouraged that our combination hepatitis C regimen has joined our anti-PD-1 immunotherapy in being designated as a ‘breakthrough therapy’ by the FDA.”
Kenneth C. Frazier, chairman and chief executive officer, Merck.
Merck has narrowed the range of full-year 2013 non-GAAP EPS to be between $3.48 and $3.52, and the 2013 GAAP EPS to be between $1.61 and $1.79.
At current exchange rates, Merck continues to anticipate full-year 2013 sales to be approximately 5 to 6 % below prior year levels.
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