Watson Pharmaceuticals Announces Strong First Quarter

Watson Pharmaceuticals, which are currently in the procedure of acquiring generics firm Actavis for 4.25 billion euros, announced strong earnings and revenue increases for their first quarter on Monday.

The company’s net income was up by 22% from $45.3 million to $54.8 million, while revenues leapt 74% to $1.52 billion.

The growth was driven by sales of generic versions of Pfizer’s cholesterol drug Lipitor, and Johnson & Johnson’s attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) drug Concerta, alongside the introduction of a copycat version of Sanofi’s antithrombotic Lovenox.

The numbers were also enhanced by strong rises in Watson’s international revenues (up 58% to $171.7 million) due to the acquisition of Specifar Pharmaceuticals in May last year, and Australia’s Ascent Pharmahealth in January 2012.

Sales at Watson’s branded unit increased by 13% to $109.6 million, mainly driven by Rapaflo for benign prostatic hyperplasia and Crinone, a progesterone vaginal gel for use in the treatment of infertile women.

The results of the first quarter were higher than previously anticipated, with Watson Pharmaceuticals predicting 2012 earnings per share of $5.55 to $5.80 on revenue of $5.5 billion, and Wall Street forecasting earnings of $5.80 per share on revenue of $5.5 billion.

Revenue in Watson’s generic unit increased to $1.12 billion from $600.1 million, driven by new product launches and an increase in international sales.

Paul Bisaro, Watson’s chief executive, commented that Watson Pharmaceuticals’ global generics business had launched over 60 new products and filed 28 applications.  He added that in addition to the acquisition of Actavis, Watson “will continue to look for strategic opportunities to propel global brands and biologics growth.”


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