Los Angeles Business Journal

Amgen’s Quarter Beats Wall Street Forecasts

By Deborah Crowe Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Amgen Inc. says first-quarter profit rose 5 percent on higher sales of its top two drugs and two new ones, and it easily beat Wall Street forecasts.

After the markets closed on Tuesday, the Thousand Oaks biotech reported net income of $1.18 billion ($1.48 a share) compared with $1.13 billion ($1.20) in the same period a year ago. Revenue rose 9 percent to $4.05 billion.

Excluding one-time items, the company said it would have earned $1.61 a share. Analysts surveyed by FactSet on average were expecting adjusted earnings of $1.46 a share on sales of $3.93 billion.

"We delivered strong sales and earnings during the first quarter, reflecting broad strength across the portfolio," said Chief Executive Kevin Sharer in a statement. "The pipeline is developing well and the business is in good shape to address the opportunities and challenges ahead.”

Combined sales of its infection fighting drugs Neulasta and Neupogen rose 9 percent to $1.34 billion. Sales of arthritis therapy Enbrel rose 7 percent to $938 million. Sales of its two new bone drugs, Xgeva and Prolia, rose 14 percent and 9 percent respectively.

Sales of Aranesp, an anemia drug hurt by safety concerns, fell 11 percent to $518 million. Sales of its oldest product, the anemia drug Epogen, were down 17 percent to $446 million.

Amgen maintained its full-year adjusted profit forecast of $5.90 to $6.15 a share.

Shares earlier closed up 34 cents, or less than 1 percent, to $68.63 on the Nasdaq.