LONDON – Pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline says higher sales of vaccines and consumer healthcare products pushed up its earnings from core business by 19 per cent in the first quarter.
Core operating profit, which excludes taxes, one-time items and restructuring costs, rose to 1.56 billion pounds ($2.28 billion) from 1.31 billion pounds in the same quarter a year earlier.
Sales of vaccines rose 23 per cent to 882 million pounds and sales of consumer healthcare products increased 26 per cent to 1.76 billion pounds. Pharmaceutical sales fell 1 per cent to 3.59 billion pounds, hurt by competition for the Advair asthma treatment.
Like many big pharmaceutical companies, GSK is struggling to develop new blockbuster drugs as older treatments lose patent protection.
Chief Executive Andrew Witty says the results demonstrate the momentum across the group “driven by growth in sales of our new products, effective cost control and execution of our restructuring and integration plans.”
Net income, which includes all income and expenses, fell 97 per cent to 282 million pounds after the company reported a 9.3 billion pound gain on the sale of its oncology unit and other assets in the first quarter of 2015.