Hospira gives Pfizer big Q2 revenue boost as new brands Ibrance, Xeljanz offset Prevnar fall

Office lobby

Editor's note: Adds comments from analysts.

Pfizer’s second-quarter results got a big boost from its Hospira buyout: The biosims-and-generics-focused acquisition helped drive an 11% revenue increase to $13.15 billion, beating analyst expectations.

Without Hospira, sales at the company’s Essential Health unit--previously known by the “established products” name--would have slipped by 6%, or 3% without currency setbacks, all but offsetting 7% growth in Innovative Health, Pfizer’s branded pharma business.

Overall, Pfizer would have eked out a 1% revenue rise without Hospira in the fold, 4% excluding currency effects.

Pfizer’s fast-launching breast cancer med Ibrance; its anticoagulant med Eliquis, shared with Bristol-Myers Squibb; its anti-inflammatory Xeljanz; and its longtime performer Lyrica all helped drive growth on the pharma side. Ibrance's $514 million in sales came in significantly ahead of analyst expectations of $492 million.

"Enbrel and Xeljanz were also surprisingly strong," Credit Suisse analysts said in a note Tuesday morning; Enbrel's $766 million and Xeljanz's $217 million in Q2 sales both beat estimates.

Prevnar 13, which has been churning out sales growth for Pfizer in recent quarters because of a new U.S. indication in adults, didn’t deliver this time around because the vaccine had all but captured that new target market in previous periods. But a new FDA approval, nabbed in July, could reverse that trend in the coming months.

Bernstein analyst Tim Anderson said Prevnar's $1.26 billion in Q2 sales fell short of his firm's expected $1.5 billion. "This quarter's weakness directionally fits with management's prior commentary warning of a slowdown in 2016 following the initial 'catch up' period from 2015," Anderson said in a Tuesday note.

The company reaffirmed its 2016 guidance, which calls for revenue of $51 billion to $53 billion and adjusted earnings per share of $2.38 to $2.48.

Evercore ISI analyst Mark Schoenebaum called Pfizer's results "a good quarter," with earnings per share 3% ahead of street estimates and sales about $150 million ahead of forecasts. "The revenue beat was across multiple products," Schoenebaum noted, particularly calling out Ibrance's outperformance.

- see the release from Pfizer

Related Articles:
Pfizer's Xeljanz marches toward ulcerative colitis nod with new data
Pfizer planning yet another plant expansion
Pfizer's superselling Prevnar 13 jab wins expanded use in U.S.
Pfizer sets painkiller marketing code with Chicago's opioid police