Forest Labs Sputters on Patent Expiration


Forest Laboratories Inc. (NYSE: FRX) reported third-quarter fiscal 2013 results before markets opened this morning. The drug maker and marketer reported an adjusted diluted earnings per share (EPS) loss of $0.21 on total revenues of $722.7 million. In the same period a year ago, Lennar reported EPS of $1.08 on revenues of $1.21 billion. Today's results also compare to the consensus estimates for a net loss of $0.14 per share and $762 million in revenue.

On a GAAP-basis, Forest Labs reported a net loss of $0.58 per share, compared with GAAP EPS of $1.04 in the third quarter of 2011. The adjusted loss excludes an upfront licensing payment of $76 million, or $0.29 per share.

The company's CEO said:

In the third quarter of fiscal 2013, as expected, we incurred a loss resulting principally from sales lost following the expiration of Lexapro's patent exclusivity in March 2012. The third quarter had lower sales of branded and generic Lexapro than the prior two quarters, as Lexapro declined in sales closer to its ultimately anticipated levels.

The company said that EPS for the fiscal year ending in March is now expected to be at the lower end of the company's previously announced range of $0.45 to $0.60. Total net revenues are now forecast at $3.1 billion to $3.2 billion. The consensus estimates call for EPS of $0.25 on revenues of $3.15 billion.

Forest Labs beat back an attempt by activist investor Carl Icahn to land four board seats, surrendering only one seat in an August vote of shareholders. Icahn owns about 11% of the company's stock.

Shares are down 5.6% in premarket trading, at $35.49 in a 52-week range of $30.90 to $38.45. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of around $37.75 before today's results were announced.

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Activist Investor, Drug companies, Earnings, Pharmaceuticals Tagged: FRX