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Novartis delivered strong Q2 performance, driven by momentum of key growth brands. FY 2021 guidance unchanged.

Ad hoc announcement pursuant to Art. 53 LR

  • Net sales in Q2 grew +9% (cc¹, +14% USD):
    • Pharmaceuticals BU grew +12% (cc, +18% USD) with continued strong growth from Entresto (+46% cc), Cosentyx (+21% cc) and Zolgensma (+48% cc). Kesimpta sales reached USD 66 million
    • Oncology BU grew +7% (cc, +11% USD) driven by Promacta/Revolade (+18% cc), Jakavi (+19% cc), Kisqali (+36% cc) and Tafinlar + Mekinist (+10% cc)
    • Sandoz grew +5% (cc, +11% USD) as the business is starting to stabilize
    • Excluding prior year forward purchasing de-stocking, we estimate Q2 net sales grew +5% (cc, +10% USD), Innovative Medicines grew +7% (cc, +11% USD) and Sandoz declined -1% (cc, + 6% USD)²
  • Q2 core¹ operating income grew +13% (cc, +18% USD) mainly driven by higher sales and favorable gross margin, partly offset by higher spend. Excluding prior year COVID-19 related forward purchasing de-stocking, we estimate core operating income increased +4% (cc, +10% USD)
  • Q2 operating income grew +41% (cc, +48% USD), mainly from higher sales as well as divestment gains
  • Q2 net income increased +49% (cc, +55% USD) benefiting from lower financial expenses
  • Q2 free cash flow1 of USD 4.2 billion (+17% USD), mainly driven by higher operating income, partly offset by unfavorable changes in working capital
  • H1 sales grew +3% (cc, +7% USD) and core operating income grew +2% (cc, +6% USD):
    • Innovative Medicines sales grew +5% (cc, +9% USD) and core operating income +6% (cc, +10% USD)
    • Sandoz sales declined -5% (cc, 0% USD) and core operating income declined -19% (cc, -16% USD)
  • Key innovation milestones:
    • Iptacopan Ph2 studies met endpoints in PNH, IgAN and C3G (IA); Ph3 studies enrolling
    • 177Lu-PSMA-617 reduced mortality in patients with mCRPC; received Breakthrough Therapy designation
    • Zolgensma demonstrated transformational efficacy in presymptomatic children with SMA
    • Inclisiran resubmission of NDA filed with FDA to address manufacturing related CRL
    • Asciminib submitted to FDA for treatment of adult patients with Ph+ CML
  • 2021 Group guidance³ unchanged

Basel, July 21, 2021 - commenting on the quarter, Vas Narasimhan, CEO of Novartis, said:

“Novartis delivered a strong second quarter, driven by the momentum of our key growth brands, including Cosentyx, Entresto, Zolgensma, our Oncology portfolio and the launch of Kesimpta which continues to accelerate. Our pipeline of novel medicines continues to progress with key positive readouts in diseases with high unmet need, including iptacopan in a range of immune mediated diseases, 177Lu-PSMA-617 in prostate cancer and Zolgensma in spinal muscular atrophy. We reached a notable milestone in our journey to build trust with society, tackling global health access challenges, by reaching a billion antimalarial courses delivered to patients most in need. Looking ahead, we reconfirm our full-year guidance and our commitment to drive long-term accretive growth”.

Key figures¹        
 Q2 2021Q2 2020% changeH1 2021H1 2020% change
Net sales12 95611 34714925 36723 63073
Operating income3 4792 35248415 8945 0961612
Net income2 8951 86755494 9544 0402319
EPS (USD)1.290.8257522.201.772421
Free cash flow4 2353 63117 5 8325 6523
Författare GlobeNewswire