Sanofi plans share buyback as profits fall

Faltering products and pipeline problems have beset Sanofi-Aventis. Analysts were disappointed as net profits declined about 6%, falling from 1.79 billion euros to 1.68 last quarter. Sales of Ambien/Stilnox and Eloxatin fell thanks to new generic competition. An FDA advisory panel’s thumbs down on Zimulti/Acomplia also hurt. One bit of good news was a rebound in Plavix sales following a skirmish with a generic rival. The company says it will buy back up to 3 billion euros ($4.1 billion) worth of stock by May 2008

- see the Sanofi release