Bristol-Myers Voluntarily Withdraws Application for Combination Lung Cancer Treatment

03:43 01/25/2019

Pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb has announced this week that it has withdrew its application for its combination lung cancer treatment. The company has withdrawn the application for the pairing of blockbuster cancer immunotherapy drugs Opdivo and Yervoy, in a subset of patients with previously untreated non-small cell lung cancer, due to needing more data. The pharma giant said it will be working to collect more data and said the decision was made after discussions with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The company revealed the news in its fourth quarter financial results, which CEO Giovanni Caforio said, "I could not be prouder of our very strong performance for the quarter, which wraps up a very good year for the company. This was driven by excellent commercial execution on our priority brands and disciplined expense management that has driven improvement in our operating margin." For the fourth quarter, Bristol-Myers reported results that were better than expected and also reported 2019 earnings projections that were in line with what analysts are expecting. For the quarter, the company reported net earnings of $1.19 billion, or 73 cents a share, compared with a loss of $2.3 billion, or $1.42 a share, last year. It earned 94 cents a share in the quarter while analysts were only expecting 85 cents. Fourth-quarter sales for Opdivo at $1.8 billion also beat analysts' estimates of $1.47 billion, according to IBES data from Refinitiv. Looking ahead, Bristol-Myers has forecast adjusted earnings of $4.10 to $4.20 per share for 2019, excluding any impact from the Celgene deal. Revenue is expected to be $5.97 billion. It was earlier this month that the drug maker revealed plans to acquire Celgene Corp. for $74 billion. Caforio also stated, “We are creating a great company with complementary franchises of marketed products, an opportunity to launch six new products in the next 24 months, and doubling the size of our early pipeline.”

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