Spain's Faes net down, targets 2008 Bilastina sales

MADRID, March 2 Fri Mar 2, 2007 6:01am EST

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MADRID, March 2 (Reuters) - Spanish drugs company Faes Farma reported a 2.5 percent fall in 2006 net profit on Friday, but said it could be selling its antihistamine drug Bilastina in some countries by next year.

Faes said it was in advanced negotiations with drug companies in Europe, which should be concluded in the second quarter of the year, to sell Bilastina in some countries by 2008.

It said negotiations with drug companies on selling the drug in Asia had recently begun and should bear fruit this year or next.

In November Faes reached an $89 million deal with Inspire Pharmaceuticals ISPH.O to develop and distribute Bilastina in North America. Faes has said it expects to apply for U.S. approval at some point this year to sell the antihistamine in the world's largest drugs market.

Net profit for 2006 slipped to 22.6 million euros, it said on Friday. Sales were up 11.3 percent to 185.2 million and EBITDA increased 12 percent to 38.2 million.

Partner Inspire estimates that annual sales of Bilastina could top $200 million.

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