UCB suffers as cold weather delays hay fever season

BRUSSELS, April 25 Thu Apr 25, 2013 1:18am EDT

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BRUSSELS, April 25 (Reuters) - Belgian drugmaker UCB had a difficult first quarter as cold spring weather in Europe meant fewer hay fever sufferers were buying its allergy medicines, it said on Thursday.

Its revenues for the quarter slipped 9 percent to 799 million euros ($1.04 billion) impacted by slower sales of its allergy drugs Xyzal and Zyrtec, and as generic competition continues to eat into its former blockbuster Keppra, an epilepsy treatment.

It said Keppra sales fell 23 percent, but reiterated its full-year guidance for revenue of about 3.4 billion euros as its new range of drugs continue to pick up the slack.

($1 = 0.7695 euros) (Reporting By Ben Deighton, Editing By Ethan Bilby)

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