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Novartis posts strong Q1 2011 results

Novartis has announced net sales of $14bn for the first quarter of 2011, due in part to positive demand for the company's new multiple sclerosis treatment Gilenya

Novartis has announced net sales of $14bn for the first quarter of 2011, an increase of 16 per cent on the same period last year.

This was due in part to positive demand, and sales of $59m, for the company's new multiple sclerosis treatment Gilenya (fingolimod), which gained EU approval during the quarter. 

The company's new product for the treatment of vision loss due to diabetic macular edema,  Lucentis (ranibizumab), which was also approved for use in the EU, produced sales worth $444m.

Novartis reported an increase in net sales (excluding A(H1N1) pandemic flu vaccine sales and Alcon) of 10 per cent and attributed 26 per cent of total sales (excluding Alcon) to recently launched products.

The company's pharmaceutical net sales increased by 7 per cent to $7.8bn while profits for the vaccines and diagnostics side of the business were down 73 per cent in constant currencies, due to 2010 A(H1N1) pandemic flu vaccine sales of $1.1bn. Excluding these sales, vaccines and diagnostics sales increased by 43 per cent in constant currencies.

Novartis completed its merger with Alcon on April 8, 2011. During the first quarter of 2011, Alcon contributed $1.9bn of net sales (with a strong performance from pharmaceuticals) and $722m to core operating income.

In this video broadcast CEO of Novartis, Joseph Jimenez, talks about the Novartis and Alcon merger.

Novartis announced last week it is to discontinue a phase III trial of Tasigna (nilotinib) as an investigational treatment for gastrointestinal stromal tumours (GIST). However, sales of Tasigna in its primary indication as a targeted therapy for Philadelphia chromosome-positive chronic myeloid leukemia (Ph+ CML), increased by over 100 per cent to $153m in Q1. 

19th April 2011

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