Schering-Plough Pledges Action

'Now we're going to let it run,' CEO Fred Hassan thunders.
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Schering-Plough (SGP) beat third-quarter targets and said it was entering a new phase of its turnaround.

The Kenilworth, N.J., drugmaker made $309 million, or 19 cents a share, for the quarter ended Sept. 30, up from the year-ago $65 million, or 3 cents a share. Sales rose to $2.57 billion from $2.28 billion a year earlier.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial were looking for a 14-cent profit on sales of $2.49 billion.

"Schering-Plough today enters a new period in the transformation of this company -- the Build the Base phase of our Action Agenda," said CEO Fred Hassan. "The Turnaround phase we announced a year ago set a strong foundation. Now the company is operating from a position of growing strength.

"We will be honing our edge -- in people, products and processes. We will be getting even more from what we have. And we will be extending our core -- to new patients, new customers, new markets. We will be investing to advance important new treatments in our pipeline through phases II and III. We have built a strong engine. Now we're going to let it run."