AstraZeneca: Annual profits halve on restructuring

GMT 12:47 2015 Thursday ,05 February

Arab Today, arab today AstraZeneca: Annual profits halve on restructuring

British pharmaceuticals group AstraZeneca
London - AFP

British pharmaceuticals group AstraZeneca said Thursday that 2014 net profits more than halved on the back of a vast restructuring charge, and forecast sliding sales this year.
Profits after taxation slumped to $1.235 billion last year, compared with $2.571 billion in 2013, AstraZeneca announced in a results statement.
The performance was rocked by a huge $1.558-billion restructuring charge, including a $391-million hit in the fourth quarter.
AstraZeneca successfully fought off a $117-billion takeover bid from US giant Pfizer last year, amid worries over British jobs and research capability.
Turning to the outlook, AstraZeneca forecast Thursday that sales revenue was expected to fall by a mid single-digit percentage in 2015.
Earnings per share (EPS) -- a key measure of company performance -- was forecast to increase by a low single-digit percentage.
"2014 was a remarkable year for AstraZeneca," said Chief Executive Pascal Soriot.
"We achieved a record six product approvals as we accelerated our pipeline across all main therapy areas."
In early 2013, AstraZeneca announced it would seek to axe around 5,050 jobs over 2013-2016 in a radical restructuring.
The group increased the job losses one year later to 5,600 positions.
"The company is making good progress in implementing the fourth phase of restructuring announced in the first quarter of 2013 and the expansion of this programme announced in the first half of 2014," it said Thursday.
Separately on Thursday, AstraZeneca announced a deal with US drugmaker Actavis to buy the rights to its respiratory business in the United States and Canada for an initial $600 million, plus royalties dependent on revenues.


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