AstraZeneca share price slides as Q1 earnings fall

on Apr 24, 2015
Updated: Oct 21, 2019
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Shares in AstraZeneca Plc (LON:AZN) have given up early gains this morning, with the company unveiling a drop in first-quarter revenue and earnings. The Anglo-Swedish drugmaker, which about a year ago fended off a £69 billion takeover approach by Pfizer Inc (NYSE:PFE), separately announced two collaboration deals in the field of immuno-oncology.

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As of 08:31 BST, AstraZeneca’s share price had lost 1.22 percent to stand at 4,771.00p, having opened in positive territory. The company’s shares have appreciated about 15 percent over the past year, but are still trading well below the £55-per-share offered by the US pharma giant.
AstraZeneca announced today in a statement that its total revenue had grown one percent on a constant currency basis to $6 billion (£4 billion). Based on actual exchange rates, however, it fell six percent. The company’s core earnings per share (EPS) dropped seven percent to $1.08 at actual exchange rates. Reuters notes that industry analysts had on average forecast sales of $5.98 billion and earnings of $1.07 cents a share, according to Thomson Reuters. AstraZeneca’s reported operating profit jumped 11 percent to $933 million, while reported EPS came in nine percent higher at $0.44.
AstraZeneca today reiterated its guidance provided earlier this year, saying that it expected its full-year total revenue to decline by mid single-digit percent at constant exchange rates (CER). Core EPS are forecast to increase by low single-digit percent at CER.
Commenting on the results, AstraZeneca’s chief executive Pascal Soriot said that the company’s “encouraging performance in the quarter supports our full year guidance”. He added that the pharmco had continued to reinforce its oncology franchise and now had 72 trials underway, including 31 in immune-oncology.
Separately, AstraZeneca and its R&D arm MedImmune announced that they had inked immuno-oncology collaboration deals with Innate Pharma and Celgene Corporation. Under the terms of the agreement with Innate Pharma, AstraZeneca will make an initial payment of $250 million, which includes the consideration for exclusive global rights to co-develop and commercialise Innate’s experimental compound IPH2201 in combination with MedImmune’s MEDI4736, as well as access to IPH2201 in monotherapy and other combinations in certain treatment areas.
The second collaboration deal will see Celgene make an upfront payment of $450 million to AstraZeneca in relation to the Anglo-Swedish company’s MEDI4736, due to be developed and commercialised across a range of blood cancers including non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, myelodysplastic syndromes and multiple myeloma.
As of 08:16 BST, Friday, 24 April, AstraZeneca plc share price is 4,830.00p.

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