Sanofi Q1 profit slips on generic competition, forex effects

By Thomson Reuters Apr 25, 2024 | 12:38 AM

By Ludwig Burger

(Reuters) -Sanofi reported on Thursday that its first-quarter operating income declined 14.7%, as unfavourable currency effects and cheap competition to multiple sclerosis drug Aubagio outweighed rising sales of anti-inflammatory drug Dupixent.

The French drugmaker said in a statement that operating income, adjusted for one-offs, slipped to 2.84 billion euros ($3.04 billion), a touch above the 2.79 billion euros expected on average by analysts in a poll on the company’s website.

The company reiterated it expects 2024 adjusted earnings per share (EPS) to slip by a “low single-digit” percentage, excluding currency swings, citing higher taxes and an increase in development expenditure.

Currency changes would drag 2024 earnings lower by between 5.5% and 6.5% at current rates, it added. Finance chief Francois-Xavier Roger said in a media call that the decline in the Argentine Peso was a particular drag on first-quarter overseas sales.

Quarterly sales of eczema and asthma drug Dupixent jumped a currency-adjusted 25% to 2.84 billion euros, in line with analyst expectations and accounting for 27% of group sales.

CFO Roger, previously at Nestle, said that preparations to list the Consumer Healthcare division on the Paris stock exchange from the fourth quarter were fully on track but other options, such as a sale, were not off the table.

($1 = 0.9338 euros)

(Reporting by Ludwig Burger; Editing by Benoit Van Overstraeten and Subhranshu Sahu)