BIG PHARMA EARNINGS WATCH: GLAXOSMITHKLINE & ABBVIE
Big Pharma Giants Boast Better Than Expected Q2 Earnings While Price-Gouging Patients
Another round of second-quarter earnings reports from GlaxoSmithKline and AbbVie showcased once again that hiking prices on brand name prescription drugs continues to fuel big profits for the pharmaceutical industry. Both Big Pharma companies topped Wall Street analysts’ earnings expectations for the second quarter of 2023 and reported strong profits after price hikes earlier this year, as well as in recent years.
- GlaxoSmithKline topped Wall Street analysts’ revenue and profit estimates, reporting revenues of $9.3 billion for the second quarter.
- The Big Pharma giant raised its 2023 outlook, expecting sales to rise eight to 10 percent this year.
- Over the last four quarters, the company has surpassed consensus EPS estimates four times.
- Revenue from GSK’s vaccines rose 18 percent year-over-year, driven by the popular shingles vaccine Shingrix – the company’s top-selling drug – which brought in more than $1.1 billion.
- Revenue from GSK’s general medicines unit climbed eight percent, driven by strong sales of respiratory drugs Nucala and Trelegy.
- AbbVie reported second-quarter revenue and earnings that beat Wall Street analysts’ forecasts.
- The drug maker reported second-quarter revenue of $13.86 billion.
- AbbVie raised its full-year 2023 adjusted earnings forecast.
- In the second quarter, immunology treatments Skyrizi and Rinvoq continued strong growth with combined sales topping $2.8 billion.
- AbbVie’s blockbuster arthritis drug Humira, which notched the top spot for the world’s best-selling drug for a tenth straight year in 2022, brought in more than $4 billion in Q2.
The strong earnings calls come as both of the drug makers have leveled significant price hikes in recent years, including at the start of 2023.
- GlaxoSmithKline has already hiked prices on more than 50 prescription drugs this year, including blockbuster shingles vaccine Shingrix by nine percent.
- GlaxoSmithKline raisedprices on more than 30 drugs last year, including on popular respiratory treatment and cancer drug Zejula.
- In 2021, GlaxoSmithKline increased prices 34 times, including on top-selling respiratory drug Trelegy Ellipta.
- Earlier this year, GlaxoSmithKline received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a vaccine against respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), called Arexvy. Already, the Big Pharma firm appears to be working in lockstep with fellow drug maker Pfizer to increase prices across the new category.
- Ahead of Arexvy’s approval, GSK said it anticipated pricing the shot somewhere between $60 and $185. Immediately following FDA approval, GSK indicated their price would land in the higher end of the range, above $120.
- Following approval of Pfizer’s RSV vaccine, Abrysvo, GSK shared a new range, increasing their projected price to be between $200 and $295.
- AbbVie hiked prices on 44 prescription drugs in January of this year, including eight percentincreases each on the company’s blockbuster autoimmune drugs Humira and Skyrizi.
- This July, AbbVie again increased the price of plaque psoriasis drug Skyrizi by 4 percent.
- In 2022, AbbVie increased prices on more than 40 prescription drugs.
- In 2021, the company launched 50 price increases across its portfolio.
Read more on Q2 earnings from Novartis and Johnson & Johnson HERE.
Stay tuned as we continue to monitor earnings calls from Big Pharma for the second quarter of 2023 over the next few weeks.
Learn more about solutions to lower prescription drug prices and hold Big Pharma accountable HERE.