* 4th quarter adjusted EPS $1.40 vs Street view $1.38
* Revenue up 11 percent to $4.42 billion
* Sees 2013 adjusted EPS $6.85-$7.15, revs $17.8-$18.2 bln
* Shares fall 0.6 percent after hours
(Adds long-term forecast, company and analyst comment, share
By Bill Berkrot
Jan 23 Amgen Inc on Wednesday projected
revenue for 2013 that exceeds Wall Street estimates and said it
was on track to deliver on its 2015 forecasts well ahead of
The world's largest biotechnology company forecast 2013
revenue of $17.8 billion to $18.2 billion and adjusted earnings
of $6.85 to $7.15 per share. Analysts on average are looking for
revenue of $17.7 billion and earnings of $6.99 per share,
according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
The 2013 forecast suggests "that they expect good momentum
from 2012," RBC Capital Markets analyst Michael Yee said. "They
have a history of guiding conservatively and then beating."
The company was true to that history on a call with analysts
Amgen previously targeted 2015 revenue of $16 billion to $18
billion and adjusted earnings of $7.25 to $8.60 per share. On
Wednesday, Amgen management said it was on track to hit the
upper end of its 2015 revenue guidance two years early and the
EPS forecast at least one year early.
It said it is on track to earn at least $8 per share for
Amgen, whose shares gained 34 percent last year, noted that
its deferred 2012 research and development (R&D) tax credit,
which the U.S. Congress failed to address in time for 2012,
would be recorded in the first quarter of 2013. The company also
intends to continue to return cash to investors through
meaningful increases to its dividend going forward.
Net profit for the fourth quarter fell as sales of some key
products declined and R&D spending and other costs jumped.
Excluding items, Amgen had adjusted earnings of $1.40 per
share, topping analysts' average expectations by 2 cents. Net
profit fell to $788 million, or $1.01 per share, from $934
million, or $1.08 per share, a year ago.
Revenue for the quarter rose 11 percent to $4.42 billion,
edging past Wall Street estimates of $4.37 billion. But R&D
spending rose 9 percent due to large clinical trials of two
experimental drugs, including for a promising cholesterol
fighter from a new class of medicines called PCSK9 inhibitors
that is just beginning expensive late stage testing.
Selling, general and administrative costs rose 13 percent
for the quarter.
Sales of Enbrel for rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis
jumped 23 percent to $1.16 billion with the help of price
increases. That topped analyst estimates of $1.08 billion.
But sales of other important products declined and fell
short of expectations, including combined worldwide sales of
white blood cell boosters Neupogen and Neulasta, which fell 1
percent to $1.3 billion.
Sales of anemia drugs Aranesp and Epogen, which have been
declining in recent years because of safety concerns and usage
restrictions continued to slide, but at a slower pace.
Aranesp sales fell 9 percent to $489 million, while the
older red blood cell booster, Epogen, fell just 1 percent to
$479 million, both missing analysts' expectations of about $505
million and $480 million, respectively.
Sales of newer drug Xgeva to prevent fractures due to cancer
that has spread to the bones rose to $215 million from $201
million in the prior quarter, but fell short of Wall Street
estimates of about $222 million.
The related osteoporosis drug, Prolia, exceeded expectations
of about $137 million with fourth quarter sales of $154 million.
"Enbrel and Prolia were the only major line-items that
appeared to beat," Mark Schoenebaum, an analyst with ISI Group,
said in a research note.
"Neupogen/Neulasta missed by a bit, and this needs to be
monitored as Amgen prepares for more U.S competition from Teva
in late 2013," Schoenebaum said.
Amgen shares slipped to $82.60 in after hours trading from
their Nasdaq close at $83.07.
(Reporting by Bill Berkrot; additional reporting by Deena
Beasley in Los Angeles. Editing by Andre Grenon)