The Valley Forge, Pa., drug distributor made $122 million, or 61 cents a share, for the quarter ended Sept. 30, up from the year-ago continuing operations profit of $21 million, or a dime a share. Revenue rose to $14.64 billion from $12.96 billion a year earlier.
Analysts were looking for a 56-cent profit on sales of $15.28 billion.
"Our outstanding performance in the September quarter and the fiscal year exceeded our internal expectations and sets the stage for continued strong performance in fiscal 2007," said CEO R. David Yost. "Our record operating revenue was again above our expectations, and our excellent earnings per share performance in the quarter was driven by great results in the pharmaceutical distribution business, including strong growth in our specialty business; improvement in the PharMerica segment; and reduced interest expense and shares outstanding. With $1.3 billion in cash and no net debt, our balance sheet continues to be strong and our financial flexibility significant."
Amerisource guided to 2007 earnings of $2.40 to $2.55 a share, compared with the $2.41 Thomson Financial estimate.