* 3rd quarter adjusted EPS $1.67 vs Street $1.47
* Revenue up 10 percent to $4.32 billion
* Sees 2012 adjusted EPS $6.50 to $6.60
* Shares rise 1.4 percent
(Adds cost detail, analyst and company comment, updates shares)
By Bill Berkrot
Oct 23 Amgen Inc on Tuesday reported
higher-than-expected third-quarter profit in its first full
quarter under Chief Executive Robert Bradway and it raised its
full-year earnings and revenue forecasts.
The quarterly results were helped by strong sales of its
blockbuster rheumatoid arthritis drug Enbrel and lower expenses,
and Amgen shares rose more than 1 percent.
Excluding items, Amgen posted adjusted earnings of $1.67 per
share, topping analysts' average expectations by 20 cents,
according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S, and marking the second
successive quarter that the company exceeded Wall Street
estimates by at least that much.
The world's largest biotechnology company said net profit
rose to $1.1 billion, or $1.41 per share, from $454 million, or
50 cents per share, a year ago, when it took a large charge to
settle a probe related to sales and marketing practices.
The company now expects 2012 adjusted earnings of $6.50 to
$6.60 per share and revenue of $17.2 billion to $17.3 billion.
It had previously forecast earnings of $6.20 to $6.35 per share
and revenue of $16.9 billion to $17.2 billion.
"Our business has very good momentum," Bradway told analysts
on a conference call.
Revenue for the quarter rose 10 percent to $4.32 billion,
exceeding Wall Street estimates of $4.25 billion, w hile total
operating expenses fell to $2.89 billion from $3.42 billion in
the year ago quarter.
The company cautioned that expenses would likely rise as
promising drugs in its developmental pipeline advance to larger
and more expensive clinical trials.
"It was a real solid quarter with Enbrel driving much of the
upside, and good expense control led to substantially higher
operating margins and the EPS beat," said Cowen and Co analyst
"Business at Amgen is very good," said Schmidt, adding that
he believes even the new forecast will turn out to have been
Sales of Enbrel rose 17 percent to $1.08 billion, driven by
price increases and higher demand for the drug that is also used
to treat psoriasis. En brel is expected to become even more
profitable for Amgen late next year, when a profit-sh a ring deal
with Pfizer Inc expires.
Combined worldwide sales of Amgen's white blood cell
boosters Neupogen and Neulasta rose 1 percent to $1.35 billion.
Xgeva, a new drug to prevent fractures from cancer that has
spread to the bones, had sales of $201 million, slightly ahead
of Wall Street consensus estimates for $199 million and 12
percent higher than the previous quarter.
The related osteoporosis drug Prolia, however, saw sales
fall 8 percent from the prior quarter to $110 million, due in
part to wholesaler stocking issues, the company said.
Prolia sales have picked up to start the fourth quarter,
Amgen told analysts.
Amgen's older anemia drug Epogen proved something of a
bright spot. Its sales, which have been in decline for years
because of safety concerns and dosage restrictions, rose 3
percent from a year ago to $491 million, topping analyst
expectations of about $476 million.
The company called the impact from competition for Epogen
"modest." In March, U.S. health regulators approved Omontys, a
rival anemia drug from Affymax Inc.
Sales of its other red blood cell booster, Aranesp, which
have been hit with similar safety and usage issues, fell 17
percent to $497 million, missing Wall Street estimates for $534
Amgen shares rose to $88.50 in extended trading from their
Nasdaq close at $87.32. The shares, which have been on a tear,
are up about 36 percent since the start of the year.
(Reporting by Bill Berkrot; Editing by M.D. Golan)