USA – Pfizer, the pharmaceutical giant has reported a significant decline in its financial performance for the first quarter (Q1) of 2024.

The company’s net income plummeted by 44% to US$3.11 billion compared to US$5.54 billion in Q1 2023. 

This decline was mirrored in the reported diluted earnings per share (EPS), which fell by the same margin to US$0.55 from US$0.97 in the corresponding quarter last year.

The drop in revenue was substantial, with total revenues amounting to US$14.87 billion, marking a 20% decrease from US$18.48 billion in the previous year’s Q1. 

The decline was attributed to a sharp decrease in global revenues from Pfizer’s COVID-19 therapies, Comirnaty and Paxlovid. 

Foreign exchange rates also contributed negatively, impacting revenues by US$ 107 million.

Excluding contributions from COVID-19 treatments, Pfizer’s revenues stood at US$12.5 billion, showcasing an operational increase of 11% or US$1.2 billion compared to the same quarter of the previous year.

Pfizer’s Chairman and CEO, Dr. Albert Bourla, acknowledged the challenging landscape but highlighted strong performance in the company’s non-COVID product portfolio.

He noted increased revenue from recent commercial launches and acquired products, as well as robust year-on-year growth for key brands like Vyndaqel, Eliquis, and the Prevnar family. 

Additionally, the company saw significant contributions from oncology revenue, driven by products such as Ibrance, Xtandi, Padcev, and Adcetris. 

The successful transition of Paxlovid into the commercial marketplace in the US was also highlighted as a positive indicator.

In response to the financial challenges, Pfizer adjusted its diluted EPS guidance for the full year 2024 to a range of US$ 2.15 to US$2.35, up from the previous range of US$2.05 to US$2.25. 

The company maintained its projection for full-year 2024 revenues between US$ 58.5 billion and US$61.5 billion, including anticipated joint revenues of US$8 billion from Comirnaty and Paxlovid.

Looking beyond financial figures, Pfizer made notable strides in its product pipeline, including obtaining FDA approval for its one-time gene therapy, BEQVEZ, to treat adults with moderate to severe hemophilia B. 

The company remains committed to advancing treatments across various therapeutic areas, such as respiratory and hematology.

However, challenges persist in navigating the post-COVID market, with uncertainties surrounding the Inflation Reduction Act and its potential impact on drug pricing and revenue. 

Despite these challenges, Pfizer remains focused on its capital allocation strategy, prioritizing dividends and debt repayment while evaluating opportunities for strategic acquisitions.

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