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Celgene Profit Swells (Update)

Celgene's third-quarter profit rose 251% on gains made through an acquisition and higher sales of its cancer drugs.

Shares of


(CELG) - Get Free Report

were higher Thursday after the drugmaker reported that third-quarter profit rose 251% on gains made through an acquisition and higher sales of its cancer drugs.

The Summit, N.J.-based drugmaker on Thursday reported profits of $136.8 million, or 29 cents a share in the third quarter, compared with net income of $38.8 million, or 9 cents a share, in the year-ago period.

Third-quarter revenue rose 69% to $592 million from $350 million one year ago.

On an adjusted basis, Celgene earned 40 cents a share in the third quarter, topping the consensus estimate of 39 cents a share, according to Thomson Reuters.

On a conference call, Celgene management said the company expects to exceed prior guidance of $1.50 a share in earnings and $2.2 billion in total revenue for the year. Current consensus estimates have Celgene earning $1.54 a share on revenue of $2.25 billion.

Celgene shares were up 6.3% to $56.67 in recent trading.

Higher sales of Celgene's cancer drugs bolstered the company's earnings performance. Sales of Revlimid totaled $343 million in the quarter, an increase of 72% compared with the prior-year period. Revlimid sales for the quarter fell a bit short of analyst expectations of around $348 million.

On its call, Celgene management said Revlimid's performance in Europe, where the multiple myeloma drug is still being rolled out across various countries, was strong even with negative foreign currency effects. In the U.S., Revlimid prescription volume increased more than 7% quarter over quarter despite a typically slow summer and increased competition from Velcade, another multiple myeloma drug marketed by Japanese drug maker



Looking ahead, Celgene is pursuing an aggressive strategy to expand Revlimid's use into two new blood cancers -- chronic lymphocytic leukemia and non-Hodgkins lymphoma.

Vidaza sales rose 50% to $64 million in the quarter. Vidaza sales are accelerating after Celgene relaunched the drug following the completion of the Pharmion acquisition and the release of negative survival data for Dacogen, a competing drug marketed by Japanese drugmaker Eisai.

Celgene announced that it paid


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$425 million in the third quarter to buy back a royalty obligation on future Vidaza sales. The agreement is expected to improve Vidaza's gross margin and provide some tax benefits for Celgene, the company said.

Sales of Thalomid were $132 million, which includes sales in Europe previously booked by Pharmion.

With Celgene's earnings announcement Thursday, all the big-cap biotechs have now reported. Overall, it was a strong earnings season, with




Gilead Sciences

(GILD) - Get Free Report



(AMGN) - Get Free Report

and now Celgene all reporting better-than-expected results.

View our complete earnings coverage


At the time of publication, Feuerstein's Biotech Select model portfolio was long Celgene.

Adam Feuerstein writes regularly for In keeping with TSC's editorial policy, he doesn't own or short individual stocks, although he owns stock in He also doesn't invest in hedge funds or other private investment partnerships. Feuerstein appreciates your feedback;

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