Pfizers profit more than doubles as new cancer drugs offset expired patents

Author: Agency Staff

Source: Business Day

New York — US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer reported on Tuesday that third-quarter profit more than doubled as strength in newer drugs to treat cancer and other illnesses offset the hit from patent expirations.

Net income came in at $2.8bn, compared with just under $1.4bn in the year-ago period, a quarter that was hit with one-time expenses connected to Pfizer acquisitions.

Revenues edged up 0.9% to $13.2bn.

Pfizer’s earnings jumped in the “innovative health” division, which commercialises newer products, such as the Ibrance capsules for breast cancer, the anticoagulant Eliquis and the rheumatoid arthritis drug Xeljanz. Those gains were offset by a similarly sized decline in Pfizer’s legacy brand business, called “essential health”. Pfizer cited declines in some drugs, such as the antidepressant Pristiq in the US and said product shortages of injectable drugs under the Hospira brand had also hit sales.

Pfizer lifted its full-year forecast to $2.58-$2.62 per share from the previous range of $2.54-$2.60 per share.

CEO Ian Read said the company was positioned for long-term success, citing two trends: “an expected decline in the unfavourable revenue impact associated with product losses of exclusivity and the beginning of an expected multiyear wave of potential new product launches and product line extensions driven by our pipeline”.

Shares rose 1.1% in pre-market trading to $35.52.