April 19, 2018 / 10:51 AM / a month ago

BRIEF-Novartis expects cost cuts, rising Entresto, Cosentyx sales to help meet 2018 op. profit targets

April 19 (Reuters) - Novartis AG:

* CEO SAYS BELIEVES COSENTYX SALES FOR FULL YEAR WILL BE IN LINE WITH CONSENSUS, HAD SOME DESTOCKING BY SPECIALTY PHARMA IN Q1 BUT BELIEVES DRUG WILL OVERCOME THAT

* CEO SAYS SANDOZ HAD A TOUGH FIRST QUARTER, STRONG PERFORMANCE OUTSIDE US BUT CONTINUED PRICE PRESSURES THERE, LOOKING FORWARD TO UPCOMING BIOSIMILARS LAUNCHES

* CEO SAYS ALCON ON NICE GROWTH TRAJECTORY, NOVARTIS REMAINS ON COURSE FOR POTENTIAL CAPITAL MARKETS ACTION IN 2019

* CEO SAYS CONTINUES TO LOOK FOR BOLT-ON ACQUISITIONS IN CORE THERAPEUTIC AREAS, NEW TECHNOLOGY PLATFORMS

* CEO SAYS WILL CONTINUE TO EVALUATE ORAL SOLIDS BUSINESS AT SANDOZ IN UNITED STATES, NO DECISIONS MADE YET

* CEO SAYS KYRIAH OFF TO A SOLID START IN PEDIATRIC ALL, EXPECTS DLBCL APPROVAL IN US, EUROPE LATER THIS YEAR, REMAINS CONFIDENT WILL BE A BLOCKBUSTER MEDICINE

* CEO SAYS ENTRESTO SALES GROWTH, COST CUTS, CONTINUED ALCON DEVELOPMENT WILL HELP SPUR CORE OPERATING PROFIT IMPROVEMENTS IN 2018 COMPARED TO Q1

* CEO SAYS CURRENTLY SEARCHING FOR NEW HEAD OF BUSINESS SERVICES, BUT FEELS GOOD WITH WHERE NOVARTIS IS AS A TEAM FOLLOWING JOHN TSAI’S APPOINTMENT AS NEW DRUG DEVELOPMENT CHIEF, CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage: (Reporting by John Miller)

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