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Share Name Share Symbol Market Type Share ISIN Share Description
AstraZeneca LSE:AZN London Ordinary Share GB0009895292 ORD SHS $0.25
  Price Change % Change Share Price Bid Price Offer Price High Price Low Price Open Price Shares Traded Last Trade
  -174.00p -2.67% 6,351.00p 6,353.00p 6,355.00p 6,468.00p 6,335.00p 6,468.00p 1,915,484 16:35:06
Industry Sector Turnover (m) Profit (m) EPS - Basic PE Ratio Market Cap (m)
Pharmaceuticals & Biotechnology 17,322.1 1,562.8 133.3 49.4 80,442.63

AstraZeneca Sales Rose in 2018 as R&D Efforts Began to Pay Off -- Update

14/02/2019 8:54am

Dow Jones News


AstraZeneca (LSE:AZN)
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2 Months : From Jan 2019 to Mar 2019

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(Includes full-year results, background, detail on cancer-drug pivot)

 

--AstraZeneca product sales rose to $21 billion in 2018

--Oncology-drug revenue increased by 49% to $6 billion as R&D began to pay off

--Sales in China rose 25% to $3.8 billion

 
   By Denise Roland and Carlo Martuscelli 
 

AstraZeneca PLC (AZN.LN) reported Thursday its first year of meaningful sales growth since 2009 and said it expected a sharper rise this year, as efforts to replenish the pipeline and pivot toward cancer drugs start to pay off.

The Cambridge, England-based drugmaker said product sales edged up 4% to $21 billion in 2018, marking a turning point for the company after years of patent expiries hammered its performance. It said it expected growth to accelerate this year, guiding for a high-single-digit percentage increase in product sales in 2019.

These results mark a turning point for AstraZeneca, which has been battered by a string of patent expiries in recent years, leading to a decade of declining sales. At its peak, AstraZeneca raked in sales of around $33 billion.

Chief Executive Pascal Soriot, who joined the company in 2012, has invested heavily in research and development in order to rebuild the company's then-threadbare pipeline, especially in the area of cancer medicine.

Many of those drugs, now on the market, are driving the sales growth. Revenue from AstraZeneca's oncology drugs, such as Tagrisso for lung cancer and Lynparza for ovarian cancer, increased 49% to $6 billion.

Another bright spot for AstraZeneca last year was the Chinese market, where sales increased 25% to $3.8 billion. China has recently eased the path for foreign drugmakers to get their products approved in that market.

Still, investors will have to wait for those efforts to hit the bottom line: a ramp-up in investment behind new drug launches and the expansion in China meant core operating profit, a measure closely watched by analysts, slid 17% to $5.7 billion last year, while core earnings per share fell 19% to $3.46. AstraZeneca said it expects core EPS to increase in 2019, forecasting a figure of $3.50 to $3.70.

Total revenue slipped 2% to $22.1 billion due to a fall in proceeds from deals to partner or offload drugs. Net profit fell 28% to $2.2 billion.

 

Write to Denise Roland at denise.roland@wsj.com and Carlo Martuscelli at carlo.martuscelli@dowjones.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

February 14, 2019 03:39 ET (08:39 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2019 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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