Novartis earnings up at 2.3 billion dollars, helped by Alcon

21st October 2010, Comments 0 comments

Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis said Thursday that its third quarter net profit leapt 10 percent to reach 2.3 billion dollars (1.7 billion euros), lifted by its acquisition of eye-care group Alcon and sales of new drugs.

Sales were up 13 percent to 12.6 billion dollars, as Alcon-led acquisitions contributed 6 percentage points to growth.

"New and recently launched products were a key driver of overall growth in the third quarter providing 2.3 billion dollars of net sales in the 2010 period," it added.

Excluding Alcon, revenues generated from these new products -- such as multiple sclerosis drug Gilenya and renal cancer drug Afinitor, made up a fifth of net sales.

The group issued an upbeat outlook, lifting its full-year forecast to sales growth of "low to mid-teens" in constant currencies as it took into account revenues from Alcon.

Previously, it had predicted sales of "mid to high single digit."

Novartis had purchased about a quarter of Alcon, the world's biggest eyecare group, from Nestle for about 11 billion dollars in 2008.

It had an option to acquire another stake of 52 percent for around 28 billion dollars, a move which it made in August 2010.

© 2010 AFP

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