Sanofi-Aventis profit surge in first quarter

13th May 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, May 13 (AFP) - French pharmaceutical group Sanofi-Aventis reported a 28.3-percent jump in net profit to EUR 1.4 billion (USD 1.76 billion) in the first quarter, adding that the group was on track to meet 2005 forecasts.

PARIS, May 13 (AFP) - French pharmaceutical group Sanofi-Aventis reported a 28.3-percent jump in net profit to EUR 1.4 billion (USD 1.76 billion) in the first quarter, adding that the group was on track to meet 2005 forecasts.  

The pharmaceutical giant also saw sales increase by 8.4 percent to EUR 6.4 billion, the company said in a statement.  

The drug maker's shares traded at a high of EUR 70.80 early Friday on the Paris Stock Exchange, before retreating by early afternoon, down 0.43 percent to EUR 69.80.  

Sanofi's results were slightly better than analysts' expectations, according to brokerage house  Raymond James, which had forecast earnings of EUR 1.35 billion.  

"I consider the results very promising and the kind to reinforce confidence for our forecasts for the entire fiscal year," said Jean-Francois Dehecq, the group's chief, in a statement.  

Sanofi-Aventis was formed last year when French firm Sanofi Synthelabo bought Franco-German life sciences giant Aventis.  

Dehecq also said the results reflected the rapid progress of integration since the merger.  

Merrill Lynch, who said sales were in line its forecasts, noted expenses were likely to increase in subsequent quarters as Sanofi prepared for product launches and increased its investment in late stage clinical trials.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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