Bristol-Myers Sales Beat Estimates, Driven by Heart Drug

(Bloomberg) -- Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.’s blockbuster blood thinner trounced sales estimates in the first quarter, as the company prepares to bring recently acquired Celgene Corp. into the fold.

  • While investors have recently focused on cancer drug Opdivo, sales of anticoagulant Eliquis were up 28 percent to $1.92 billion in the quarter, beating the average Wall Street estimate of $1.8 billion.

Key Insights

  • For many investors, the quarter’s results are merely a placeholder after Bristol-Myers won a shareholder vote this month to approve its roughly $74 billion takeover of Celgene, paving the way to close the largest pharmaceutical deal in history.
  • With attention turned to the drugmaker’s place in a competitive cancer market, Eliquis has quietly become a juggernaut. “Eliquis has probably beaten market expectations most quarters,” said John Elicker, senior vice president of corporate affairs, in an interview. “It’s an incredible success story.”
  • Sales of the cancer drug Opdivo were $1.8 billion, shy of the average estimate of $1.85 billion. Though the drug saw 20 percent growth in the U.S., investors are concerned with its ability to maintain market share against Merck & Co.’s rival treatment Keytruda.
Bristol-Myers Sales Beat Estimates, Driven by Heart Drug

Market Reaction

  • Bristol-Myers shares, which had fallen 14 percent this year as of Wednesday’s close, were higher by 0.5 percent at $44.86 at 9:32 a.m. in New York. The stock has traded near a five-year low partly due to investor skepticism about the Celgene takeover.

Know More

  • Bristol-Myers maintained its adjusted earnings-per-share forecast of $4.10 to $4.20.
  • For more on the results, click here.
  • To read the company’s release, click here.

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