NEW YORK – Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) on Tuesday reported a higher second-quarter profit, as strong sales of drugs for epilepsy and arthritis offset plunging sales of its anemia drug and flat sales of its Cypher heart device.
The diversified health-care company, based in New Brunswick, N.J., had net profit of $2.5 billion, or 82 cents per share, compared with $1.2 billion, or 40 cents per share, in the year-earlier period.
Analysts, on average, had expected earnings of 79 cents per share, according to a poll taken by Reuters Estimates. Shares of J&J rose 0.6 percent.
The year-earlier quarter included charges of $900 million related to the acquisitions of Scios Inc. and Link Spine Group Inc. Excluding the charges, J&J said earnings rose 16.5 percent over the year-earlier quarter.
Revenue rose 11.1 percent to $11.48 billion from $10.33 billion. The benefit from the weak dollar, which increases the value of overseas sales when they are converted into dollars, accounted for 2.6 percent of the growth.
Global revenue from prescription medicines jumped 11.2 percent to $5.4 billion, on stronger sales of arthritis drug Remicade (search), Topamax for epilepsy, and the Duragesic (search) skin patch for pain.
Sales of medical devices and diagnostics rose 11.8 percent to $4.1 billion.
Sales of the Cypher stent for treating clogged arteries edged up 1 percent to $211 million. The second quarter marked the first full period that J&J faced competition in the drug-coated stent market following the launch in early March of Boston Scientific Corp.'s (BSX) rival Taxus stent.
Cypher was launched in April 2003.
In May, Boston Scientific said it had captured about 70 percent of the market for drug-coated stents, which are tiny wire mesh tubes that prop open surgically cleared arteries and deliver drugs to keep them from reclogging.
J&J said on a conference call with investors that it had a 30 percent share of the U.S. drug-coated stent market and a 48 percent share outside the United States, up from 46 percent in the same quarter a year ago. Boston Scientific's Taxus stent had been approved earlier in Europe.
Johnson & Johnson said sales of its anemia drug Procrit plunged 18 percent to $582 million, amid stiff competition from rival products. Sales of a similar drug, Eprex, that is marketed in Europe, fell 5 percent to $293 million.
Many patients have spurned the drugs in favor of Amgen Inc.'s (AMGN) newer and longer-acting Aranesp treatment.
Shares of J&J rose 31 cents to $55.20 on the NewYork Stock Exchange (search).