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Eli Lilly focuses on 2022 launches as revenues climb by 18%

Revenues in the third quarter of 2021 were driven by volume growth in new medicines, but earnings per share were a fraction below analysts’ predictions

Eli Lilly

Four growth products have fuelled an 18% increase in revenues at Eli Lilly between July and September this year compared to the same period last year.

Diabetes medicine Trulicity (dulaglutide), immunology blockbuster Taltz (ixekizumab), breast cancer therapy Verzenio (abemaciclib) and migraine prevention antibody Emgality (galcanezumab-gnlm) each saw revenues rise by more than 30% year on year.

US-based Lilly recorded worldwide revenue of $6.77bn in Q3, including worldwide revenue of $423.5m for COVID-19 therapies.

Excluding revenue from COVID-19 therapies, revenue growth was 11% in both third-quarter and year-to-date 2021 results. Earnings per share on a non-GAAP basis increased to $1.94, a 38% increase on last year, a shade below Wall Street's $1.96 estimate.

“Lilly demonstrated strong performance again this quarter. Revenue attributable to our newer medicines grew more than 35% and represented nearly 60% of our core business, an important indicator of our long-term growth potential," said chairman and CEO David Ricks.

Highlighting “numerous positive pipeline events” and the expansion of Verzenio and Jardiance through new indications, Ricks announced two pieces of regulatory news.

The first is that Lilly has started a rolling submission to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for accelerated approval of donanemab in early Alzheimer's disease. This will pit the drug against Biogen’s drug Aduhelm, which has been slow to get off the starting blocks following its controversial approval earlier this year. The phase 3 TRAILBLAZER-ALZ 4 is a head-to-head clinical trial aimed to compare the action of donanemab and Adhulem (aducanumab) in clearing brain amyloid plaque in early symptomatic Alzheimer's disease.

The second is a new drug application (NDA) to the FDA and a marketing authorisation application to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for tirzepatide for the treatment of adults with type 2 diabetes.

Both drugs will be important 2022 launches for Lilly, if approved.

Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Louise Chen concluded that the company's earnings outlook was favourable when compared with those of its peers, adding that Lilly was “entering a period of earnings growth through 2030, bolstered by multiple pipeline readouts of its first-in-class/best-in-class compounds”, including donanemab and tirzepatide.

Article by
Hugh Gosling

27th October 2021

From: Healthcare

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