Mumbai: Drug maker Lupin Ltd posted a 7% growth in net profit to Rs 210.1 crore during the three months ended June from Rs196.3 crore a year ago. Sales grew 17% to Rs 1,543.2 crore from Rs1,316.5 crore.
The quarter’s business performance was fuelled primarily by strong growth in India and Japan, said managing director Kamal Sharma. “Backed by 24 quarters of consistent performance, we continue to witness sustained growth across all our markets,” he added.
Drugmaker Lupin expects to maintain growth in the world’s biggest drug market at over 25% for the next two years as it expects more product approvals from October to drive a revial in US sales, a top official said on Wednesday.
“We didn’t have any material product launches in the quarter, which was coupled with pricing pressures,” Vinita Gupta, group president and chief executive of Lupin’s US unit, told Reuters in a telephone interview.
“...However, in the second half of the year, we see more approvals coming in, especially in the oral contraceptive segment.”
The Mumbai-based company’s US business saw a sluggish 7.5% rise in April-June with sales of generics and branded products growing 6.5% and 9% respectively, Gupta said.
The US market is a key revenue generator for Lupin—as also for most Indian pharmaceutical firms—and accounts for about half of its overall sales.
“The volumes of our existing products grew over 20%... which are our bread-and-butter products,” she said adding the company expected approvals for four to five oral contraceptives in FY12.
Industry peers Cadila Healthcare reported a 11.2% rise in overseas business while Glenmark Pharma’s US generics sales rose 37% in April-June.
With a “bigger appetite”, Lupin is scouting for acquisitions in Latin America, Gupta said.
“We are very interested in making an investment in Latin America, especially Brazil and Mexico... Typically, we are looking for targets that are above $30 million in sales.”
After establishing itself as the fifth largest seller of generic products in the US, Lupin is now eyeing an entry into Canada, she said.
“The Canada (products) pipeline and the market potential are very similar to the products in the US... and we have a substantial pipeline of products, which makes good sense for Canada,” she said adding the company has so far made 152 filings in the US market.
“We have started filings into Canada and expect next fiscal year we will start getting product approvals, at which point we would like to have commercial infrastructure ready for the launches,” she said.
The Canadian market is about 10% the size of the US market, she said.
Shares of Lupin, which have gained 7.81% during April-June as compared to the BSE healthcare index that rose 6.21%, ended at Rs 448, down 3.44% in a weak Mumbai market.