Pharmaceuticals performance lifts Bayer in Q1

29-Apr-2009

The performance of the German Bayer Group's businesses in the first quarter of 2009 varied widely, with CropScience and Pharmaceuticals continuing to grow while MaterialScience faced a slump.

The performance of the German Bayer Group's businesses in the first quarter of 2009 varied widely, with CropScience and Pharmaceuticals continuing to grow while MaterialScience faced a slump.

Management board chairman Werner Wenning said a 5% increase for the full year to around Euro 32bn could still be achieved if there was a recovery in MaterialScience.

Wenning said the downturn "seems to be bottoming out" and the first signs of a modest recovery in demand are appearing.

Group sales for Q1 were â"šÂ¬7.9bn, down 7.5% compared with a record â"šÂ¬8.5bn reported for the same quarter last year. EBITDA before special items fell by 22.4% to â"šÂ¬1.7bn.

The HealthCare division benefited from the "pleasing" performance of the pharmaceuticals business where first-quarter sales rose from â"šÂ¬2.5bn to â"šÂ¬2.6bn. All four divisions - General Medicine, Specialty Medicine, Women's Healthcare and Diagnostic Imaging - contributed to this increase. EBITDA before special items rose by 8.8% to â"šÂ¬827m.

The cancer drug Nexavar saw the strongest growth, with sales up 28.6% on a currency-adjusted basis. Sales of the multiple sclerosis treatment Betaferon/Betaseron also developed well, as did those of the YAZ family of oral contraceptives. Business with the hemophilia drug Kogenate also improved. However, sales of the antiinfective Avalox/Avelox fell due to a weak flu season in the US.

The Bayer Group's operating result was reduced in the first quarter by special charges of â"šÂ¬44m. Of this, the integration of Schering accounted for â"šÂ¬18m and restructuring programmes at CropScience and MaterialScience for â"šÂ¬8m and â"šÂ¬18m, respectively.

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The company now expects to make capital expenditures of â"šÂ¬1.4bn in 2009, while r&d expenses are planned to rise to roughly â"šÂ¬2.9bn.

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