Merck Q4 net profit more than doubles

by David Mchugh

Merck KGaA saw its profit more than double in the fourth quarter as the German pharmaceutical company benefited from higher prices for its Rebif multiple sclerosis drug and reaped rewards from its ongoing restructuring.

The Darmstadt-based company said Thursday that its rose to €272 million ($355 million), from €133 million in the same quarter the year before. Revenues rose 8 percent to €2.83 billion.

was able to charge more for Rebif in the United States. For the full year, Rebif sales increased 7.5 percent to €1.89 billion. That offset slower sales growth for its cancer drug.

The company benefited from leaving unprofitable lines of business and regions in its consumer health division, which overall saw lower sales but higher profits as the company focused its efforts and investments on more lucrative products and regions. It outsourced the manufacturing and packaging of its Seven Seas brand products in Britain, for instance.

Earnings also received a boost from its business in liquid crystal materials used in flat panel displays. The performance materials division, where the liquid crystal business provides the bulk of sales, saw revenues grow 21 percent in the fourth quarter. The division's numbers were boosted 7 percent for all of last year due to the dollar's stronger exchange rate with the euro, which magnifies euro earnings figures. The division gets the bulk of its sales in dollars.

For the full-year, profits decreased 7 percent to €567 million as the company took €504 million in non-repeating restructuring charges. Revenues rose 9 percent to €11.17 billion.

The company raised its dividend by 13 percent to €1.70 per share.

2 /5 (1 vote)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Merck's 2Q net falls on charges, but sales rise

Jul 27, 2012

Merck & Co.'s second-quarter net income fell 11.4 percent as slightly higher sales were offset by acquisition and restructuring costs. However, the drugmaker beat Wall Street expectations, and Merck shares ...

J&J Q3 net income drops 7 percent on higher costs

Oct 16, 2012

Johnson & Johnson's third-quarter profit fell 7 percent as increased research and production costs offset higher sales for its medicines and medical devices and new revenue from its biggest acquisition ever.

SAP says profits up in first quarter

Apr 13, 2012

German software giant SAP said on Friday it was sticking to its full-year targets for 2012 after profits rose in the first three months.

Recommended for you

Why aren't there any human doctors in Star Wars?

2 hours ago

Though set "a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away," it isn't hard to see in the Star Wars films a vision of our own not so distant future. But Anthony Jones, a physician with a long background in health ...

Cambodia bans 'virgin surgery' adverts

Jan 29, 2015

The Cambodian government has ordered a hospital to stop advertising so-called virginity restoration procedures, saying it harms the "morality" of society.

What's happening with your donated specimen?

Jan 28, 2015

When donating blood, plasma, human tissue or any other bodily sample for medical research, most people might not think about how it's being used. But if you were told, would you care?

Amgen tops Street 4Q forecasts

Jan 27, 2015

Amgen Inc. cruised to a 27 percent jump in fourth-quarter profit and beat Wall Street expectations, due to higher sales of nearly all its medicines, tight cost controls and a tax benefit.

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.