Novartis rides out fiscal hardship to beat Q3 forecasts

pharmafile | October 25, 2016 | News story | Manufacturing and Production, Sales and Marketing Entresto, Gleevec, Novartis 

Novartis has beaten its third-quarter sales projections, announcing that new product growth and cost cuts managed to carry the company through patient expiries.

The company took a significant hit as its blood cancer drug Gleevec had to fight its corner against a wave of generic competition, but the product still managed to generate sales of $834 million against forecasts of $738 million.

The firm’s heart drug Entresto managed to pull $53 million, $21 million more than last quarter, but $5 million below analyst estimates. The company expects full-year revenue of $200 million from the drug.

Novartis’ oncology portfolio proved to be a source of strength, highlighting the importance of its integration of its $20 billion in acquisitions from GSK last year, with several drugs from the pipeline seeing a significant rise in sales.

Despite this, profits fell for the seventh consecutive quarter; third-quarter sales fell by 1% to just under $12.13 billion, while core operating profit fell 3% to about $3.38 billion. Third-quarter earnings excluding some items fell to £1.23 a share from $1.27 year on year, yet still managed to come above analyst estimates of $1.20.

“Novartis delivered a solid Q3 despite the Gleevec generic impact in the US, due to the strong performance of our growth products,” said Novartis CEO Joseph Jimenez in a statement. “We are continuing to invest for the future, as we manage the Gleevec loss of exclusivity in 2016 and 2017.”

Matt Fellows

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