Tokyo: Daiichi Sankyo, Japan’s No. 3 drugmaker, said on Friday that its first-quarter recurring profit jumped nearly tenfold and kept its annual outlook, boosted by its Indian arm Ranbaxy.
Daiichi posted an April-June recurring profit of ¥70.1 billion ($808 million), up from ¥7.2 billion a year earlier. It kept its forecast for recurring profit to drop 18% to ¥85 billion in the year to March.
The company’s full-year forecast is short of the consensus of a ¥99 billion profit in a poll of 15 analysts by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Daiichi bought a majority stake in generic drug maker Ranbaxy Laboratories in 2008 and launched a new flagship drug, blood-thinner Effient, this year.
The makers of new drugs, including Japan’s Takeda Pharmaceutical and Astellas Pharma as well as global rivals, are struggling to develop strong successors to their mainstay drugs which face imminent patent expirations.
Effient has generated disappointing initial sales, but it, as well as Ranbaxy, have put Daiichi at a relative advantage, as other drugmakers have recently failed to launch new drugs and are mainly dependent on brand drugs.
Ranbaxy reported a net profit of 9.6 billion rupees for January-March, the first quarter of its financial year, compared with a net loss of 7.7 billion rupees in the year-ago quarter. Daiichi’s results reflect Ranbaxy’s with the timelag of a quarter.
Daiichi Sankyo shares were up 0.8% at ¥1,587 after the announcement.
The stock lost 14% as of Thursday’s close from the start of the year, underperforming the benchmark Nikkei 225 average, which shed 8 percent during the same period.