Pharma firm Pfizer falls short on slowing new market sales

City A.M. Reporter
US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer yesterday posted quarterly revenue well below Wall Street expectations, on disappointing sales of its Prevnar pediatric vaccine and a sharp pullback in emerging market revenue.

Results were also hurt by weaker-than-expected sales of Pfizer’s Lipitor cholesterol fighter, which has been facing cheaper generics since late last year.

The firm earned $3.21bn (£2.57bn) in the third quarter, down from $3.74bn a year ago, when it recorded a $1.3bn gain after selling off Capsugel.

“Like many others in the third quarter, Pfizer was weak at the revenue line, missing [forecasts] by five per cent,” said Jefferies and Co analyst Jeffrey Holford.

“However, better-than-expected operational efficiencies in manufacturing and a lower-than-expected tax rate rescued earnings to an in-line result.”

Global sales fell 16 per cent to $13.98bn, well below Wall Street expectations of $14.64bn.

Revenue from emerging markets – countries whose fast-rising spending power is key to Pfizer’s growth – fell two per cent to $2.39bn as the stronger dollar cut into the value of sales.

Sales of Prevnar 13 fell 14 per cent to $868m, while sales of its older Prevnar 7 vaccine dropped 17 per cent to $81m.