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Amgen 1Q Profit Rises 5.2% On Broad Sales Growth

DOW JONES NEWSWIRES Amgen Inc.'s (AMGN) first-quarter earnings rose 5.2% as the biopharmaceutical company reported sales growth across many of its products, helping results beat expectations. The company has been trying to bolster its research-and-development pipeline and grow sales of its bone-building drugs to help offset declining sales of its key anti-anemia drugs, which have slumped in recent years due to safety concerns and intensifying competition. Amgen recently completed $1.16 billion acquisition of Micromet Inc. (MITI), a deal expected to strengthen its cancer-drug research pipeline. Amgen reported a profit of $1.18 billion, or $1.48 a share, up from $1.13 billion, or $1.20 a share, a year earlier. Excluding acquisition and restructuring-related expenses and other items, earnings were up at $1.61 from $1.34. Revenue increased 9.2% to $4.05 billion. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters most recently projected earnings of $1.45 on revenue of $3.93 billion. Operating margin rose to 36.4% from 34.9%. Combined sales of Neulasta and Neupogen, which are used to ward off infections undergoing cancer treatment, rose 9% to $1.34 billion. The company has been counting on its new bone-building drugs, Xgeva and Prolia, to boost overall sales growth. Sales of Xgeva, a drug designed to prevent bone injuries in cancer patients, were up 14% to $153 million. Sales of Prolia, for osteoporosis in women, were up 9% to $153 million. Shares of Amgen, which affirmed its 2012 guidance, were up 1% to $69.32 in recent after-hours trading. -By Tess Stynes, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2481; Tess.Stynes@dowjones.com

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