Eli Lilly expects to lose $3bn in 2012 after its psychotic disorder drug Zyprexa lost its patent protection in a number of major markets.
But the company still expects to generate revenue of between $21.8bn and $22.8bn next year due to the growth of its key franchises and new products such as Effient, Axiron and Tradjenta.
John C. Lechleiter, Chairman, President and CEO, said 2012 is an “important year” for the company and revealed Lilly had been preparing for the loss of Zyprexa’s exclusivity to return to sustained growth in 2014.
Zyprexa’s exclusivity ended in most markets outside of Japan at the end of last year. Lilly hopes brands such as Cymbalta, Cialis, Humalog, Humulin and Forteo will offset the lost revenue generated by Zyprexa and has invested in its pipeline and brands with long standing exclusivity, and attempted to improve productivity levels to fund R&D and future growth.
“First and foremost, we are replenishing and advancing our pipeline,” said Mr Lechleiter. “We've successfully rebuilt our mid- to late-stage pipeline to position Lilly for growth post-2014, with 12 assets now in Phase III, exceeding our goal of 10 by the end of 2011. We continue to revamp our discovery efforts to ensure a more sustainable flow of innovation for the long-term.
“Second, we're investing to drive growth in the key brands that don't lose patent protection during this period and in our countercyclical growth engines that don't have the same cycle of patent expirations as our US and European pharmaceutical businesses. These include Japan, select emerging markets and our animal health business. Third, we continue to drive productivity gains across our business to fund the R&D necessary to fuel our future growth, recapitalise our physical assets and maintain our dividend at least at its current level.”
Within the company’s forecast it also anticipates that gross margin as a percentage of revenue will be approximately 77%; operating expenses will be essentially flat compared to 2011 as a result of ongoing productivity efforts; marketing, selling and administrative expenses are expected to be flat to declining; R&D expenses will be between $5bn and $5.3bn and operating cash flows of approximately $800m will fund capital expenditures, as well as the company’s business development activity and its dividends.
“We remain on track to meet or exceed the mid-term minimum financial performance outlined this past June,” said Derica Rice, Lilly Executive Vice President, Global Services and Chief Financial Officer. “From now through 2014, on an annual basis we still expect revenue to be at least $20 billion, net income to be at least $3 billion, and operating cash flow to be at least $4 billion.”