In brief | Daiichi-Sankyo, Ipsen, Karo Pharma

26 April 2019 - Deborah Wilkes

Daiichi-Sankyo, Ipsen and Karo Pharma have all recently released financial results.

Daiichi-Sankyo's OTC sales fall 9.0%

Sales by Daiichi-Sankyo's OTC business in Japan fell by 9.0% to JPY66.4 billion (USD0.60 billion) in the year ended 31 March 2019. The Japanese pharmaceutical company highlighted growth of the Transino brand and said the decrease was mainly due to changes in accounting policy.

The Japanese OTC business accounted for 7.1% of Daiichi-Sankyo's total sales, which decreased by 3.2% to JPY930 billion.

Ipsen reports steady growth

Worldwide sales by Ipsen's Consumer Healthcare business increased by 3.3% at constant currencies to EUR66.3 million (USD74.6 million) in the first quarter of 2019. As reported, sales were down by 5.2% compared to the same period a year earlier.

Consumer Healthcare's largest product was Smecta, with sales up by 2.0% at constant currencies to EUR29.9 million. Ipsen said the brand had recorded good performances in Russia, France and China.

Sales of the Tanakan ginkgo biloba product rose by 21.3% at constant currencies to EUR9.4 million. Ipsen said the brand had benefited from a low 2018 baseline in Vietnam due to licence renewal.

Sales of the Forlax laxative dropped by 17.1% at constant currencies to EUR8.5 million, while sales of Fortrans/Eziclen increased by 31.6% to EUR7.8 million.

The Consumer Healthcare business generated 11.1% of Ipsen's total sales in the first quarter of 2019, which were up by 15.8% at constant currencies to EUR597 million.

The majority of Ipsen's sales – 88.9% – came from the Specialty Care business, which reported sales up by 17.6% at constant currencies to EUR531 million.

Acquisitions keep Karo ahead

Swedish specialty pharmaceutical company Karo Pharma reported sales of SEK421 million (USD44.3 million) in the first quarter of 2019, representing a rise of 58% compared to the same period a year earlier.

Growth was driven by acquisitions, including a portfolio of prescription and OTC products bought from LEO Pharma in April 2018.

Excluding the impact of portfolio and currency changes, sales were down by 8%. Karo said the fall was mainly due to a weak flu season in Norway and delivery problems at a manufacturer.

The company's Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA) were SEK153 million in the first quarter of 2019, up from SEK88.7 million. The EBITDA margin was 36.4%.

In January 2019, private-equity firm EQT took a majority stake in Karo (click here to read the News story).

Karo acquired Norwegian consumer healthcare company Weifa – including its Paracet and Ibux pain relievers – in 2017 (click here to read the News story).

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