Regeneron's Q1 revenue, profit surge more than 30% on higher Eylea sales

Headline results for the first quarter:

Revenue

$1.8 billion (versus forecasts of $1.76 billion)

+33%

Profit

$625 million

+36%

Note: All changes are versus the prior-year period unless otherwise stated

What the company said:

"In the first quarter, we saw continued growth with Eylea, Dupixent and Libtayo in the US driven by underlying demand despite the impact of the [COVID-19] pandemic," remarked CEO Leonard Schleifer.  Still, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals noted that US demand for physician-administered Eylea in April was lower compared to a year ago, although "relative improvement" was seen by the end of the month.

Other results:

  • Eylea sales in the US: $1.2 billion, up 9%
  • Dupixent (recorded by partner Sanofi): $855 million, up 129%
  • Libtayo (in collaboration with Sanofi): $75 million, up 179%
  • Collaboration revenues: $528 million, versus $246 million in the prior-year period, including $171 million from Sanofi related to a share of profits from the antibodies Dupixent, Praluent and Kevzara

Looking ahead:

Regeneron did not provide its sales outlook for the year, but warned that it expects to see "continued adverse impact on new patient starts for all products while social distancing guidelines remain in place." The company also expects fully-recruited clinical trials to remain generally on track, but has paused new enrollment in certain studies in light of the pandemic.

Meanwhile, Regeneron said that in June, it plans to begin clinical studies of REGN-COV2, an investigational antibody "cocktail" treatment designed to prevent and treat the SARS-CoV-2 virus, with the goal of having hundreds of thousands of preventative doses available by the end of August.

Further, the company said it maintains adequate market supply for all commercialised products, adding that in a bid to allow the US manufacturing site to produce large-scale quantities of REGN-COV2, it is working with the FDA to accelerate licensing of additional commercial products made at its Ireland facility.

What analysts are saying:

Credit Suisse analyst Evan Seigerman said Regeneron's strong quarterly performance highlights resiliency of its business. However, analyst Kennen MacKay of RBC Capital Markets noted that as the company did not provide its revenue forecast for the year, this could add to investor worries on the sales hit to Eylea as prescription data point to a significant drop in the drug's use.

Pipeline update:

Schleifer stated that "based on recent promising late-stage results," Regeneron plans regulatory submissions this year for the PD-1 inhibitor Libtayo in both non-small-cell lung cancer and basal cell carcinoma. The therapy is currently approved in the USEU and elsewhere for adults with metastatic cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (CSCC) or locally advanced CSCC who are not candidates for curative surgery or curative radiation.

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