Novo Nordisk shares tumble on earnings miss, Chairman exit news

Novo Nordisk shares were trading lower in the wake of a disappointing earnings update and amid news its Chairman of the Board would step down in March.

Novo Nordisk shares tumble on earnings miss, Chairman exit news

Novo Nordisk shares slid Thursday, after the pharmaceuticals firm announced full year profits a little below analyst expectation. The earnings update also included news that its Chairman of the Board would step down in March.

By 1425 BST, Novo Nordisk shares were trading 6.43% lower at DKK311.95. The Novo Nordisk stock has moved steadily lower for the past week.

Novo Nordisk earnings disappoint

Novo Nordisk said its operating profit rose 1% to DKK49 billion in 2017 from 2016. However, the Danish-based pharma firm also said biopharmaceuticals sales sank 18% in 2017 from the previous year.

Meanwhile, looking ahead, Novo Nordisk said it was anticipating sales growth of between 2-5% in 2018.

“I am pleased that we delivered on our plans for 2017 and we are continuing to build a platform for sustainable growth,” said Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen, Novo Nordisk’s president and CEO.

“In 2018, we will focus on the global launch of Ozempic® and pursue the full value potential of our strong product portfolio in what continues to be a competitive environment,” Jørgensen added.

Novo Nordisk said it will propose a final dividend of DKK4.35 per share. In addition, the pharma firm announced plans to begin a new 12-month share repurchase programme of up to DKK14 billion.

Novo Nordisk Chairman steps down

It was also announced in the earnings report that Novo Nordisk’s chairman Göran Ando will not stand for re-election at the company’s AGM in March.

“The Board of Directors proposes current member of the Board of Directors Helge Lund to be elected as chairman of the Board of Directors,” Novo Nordisk’s release said.

Meanwhile, as previously stated, senior vice president of corporate finance at Novo Nordisk, Karsten Munk Knudsen, will succeed Jesper Brandgaard as chief financial officer in February 2018.

“Brandgaard will continue as executive vice president responsible for Biopharm and Legal Affairs,” Novo Nordisk stated.

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