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Takeda Chemical Industries Ltd. said Wednesday its group net profit logged a year-on-year rise of 2.2 percent in the first half, hitting 133.67 billion yen.

This marks the fourth straight year in which the firm has posted record-high interim earnings.

The nation’s largest drug maker attributed the improvement to brisk sales of mainstay prescription drugs both at home and overseas.

Group sales in the April-September period grew 3.6 percent from a year before to 528.75 billion yen, while group operating profit rose 7 percent to 157.32 billion yen.

The growth came despite an average cut of 6.3 percent in prescription drug prices implemented in April as the part of a government drive to curb skyrocketing medical expenses.

Sales within the firm’s prescription drugs division grew 33 billion yen to 424.5 billion yen, thanks to brisk sales of mainstay drugs, which logged a year-on-year rise of 10 percent to 30 percent.

The percentage of overseas sales within the firm’s consolidated revenues rose 3.3 points to 38.7 percent, coming in at 204.6 billion yen.

For 2002 as a whole, the firm expects to generate a group net profit of 260 billion yen on revenues of 1.03 trillion yen.

If these figures are achieved, the firm will break its revenue record for the 12th consecutive year and its net profit record for the ninth straight year.

Boost for Yamanouchi

Yamanouchi Pharmaceutical Co. said Wednesday its group net profit logged a year-on-year rise of 5.1 percent in the first half of the business year, hitting 28.97 billion yen.

The company attributed the rise to brisk domestic sales of prescription drugs.

Group sales at the country’s third-largest drug maker rose 5.6 percent to 232.62 billion yen, while group operational profit jumped 15.5 percent to 50.82 billion yen.

Both figures mark record high interim earnings figures, according to the officials.

Sales of prescription drug sales rose 6.5 percent to 202.2 billion yen.

For the entire business year, the firm expects to generate group net profit of 60 billion yen on revenues of 516 billion yen, both record figures.

Eisai profits up 11.5%

Pharmaceutical maker Eisai Co. said Wednesday its group net profit in the first half to Sept. 30 rose 11.5 percent from a year earlier to 22.25 billion yen, thanks mainly to strong overseas sales and reduced costs.

Eisai said sales of the ulcer drug Aciphex rose 22.5 percent, while those of Aricept, a drug to treat Alzheimer’s disease, increased 27.5 percent.

Per-share net profit came to 76.53 yen, up from 67.31 yen a year earlier.

Eisai said its group sales increased 11.1 percent to 234.44 billion yen, helped mainly by a 21.2 percent surge in overseas sales, which comprise about 45 percent of the company’s total sales.

Sales in North America surged 16.7 percent to 84.86 billion yen, those in Europe 51 percent to 13.98 billion yen, and those in Asia rose 36.2 percent to 4.56 billion yen.

Consolidated pretax profit declined 0.3 percent to 40.09 billion yen, Eisai said, blaming the strong yen.

The company said it will raise its interim dividend payments to 16 yen per share from 13 yen a year earlier.

For the full year, Eisai said it expects a group net profit of 43 billion yen and pretax profit of 78 billion yen on group sales of 460 billion yen.

Mitsubishi Pharma up

Mitsubishi Pharma Corp., the product of a merger of two pharmaceutical firms in October 2001, said Wednesday its group earnings surged in the fiscal first half to Sept. 30 due to increased sales and better cost performance after the merger.

In its consolidated earnings report, Mitsubishi Pharma, created through the combination of Welfide Corp. and Mitsubishi-Tokyo Pharmaceuticals Inc., said it posted a net profit of 4.54 billion yen in the half year, up 46.1 percent from a year earlier.

Its pretax profit meanwhile soared 343.8 percent to 15.24 billion yen, with sales up 56.1 percent to 138.63 billion yen. Group net profit per share came to 9.92 yen, down from 11.32 yen a year ago.

The company will pay a dividend of 5 yen per share for the interim period, unchanged from the previous year.

For the full year through next March 31, Mitsubishi Pharma forecasts a net profit of 10 billion yen and a pretax profit of 30 billion yen on sales of 290 billion yen.

In the previous fiscal year, the company logged a net profit of 8.99 billion yen and a pretax profit of 16.64 billion yen, on sales of 228.98 billion yen.

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