BMS maintains guidance as Opdivo returns to growth in Q2

Headline results for the second quarter:

  • Revenue: $11.7 billion (forecasts of $11.3 billion), up 16%
  • Profit: $1.1 billion, versus loss of $85 million in the prior year

Note: All changes are versus the prior-year period unless otherwise stated

What the company said:

"We delivered a strong quarter across each of our four therapeutic areas," remarked CEO Giovanni Caforio. The executive said that the quarter included "building momentum for our new product portfolio and Opdivo returning to growth," after the immunotherapy saw a 3% drop in sales in the first quarter to $1.7 billion.

Chief financial officer David Elkins explained that the product benefitted from approvals in new tumour types and its increased use as an initial treatment for advanced lung cancer.

Bristol Myers Squibb noted that its overall sales in the second quarter of 2020 had been negatively impacted by approximately $350 million due to COVID-19-related channel inventory work downs. However, chief commercial officer Chris Boerner said Wednesday that while the drugmaker continues to be affected by the coronavirus pandemic, it saw a significant improvement in the second quarter in many of its businesses.

Other results:

  • Revlimid: $3.2 billion, up 11%
  • Eliquis: $2.8 billion, up 29%
  • Opdivo: $1.9 billion, up 16%
  • Pomalyst/Imnovid: $854 million, up 15%
  • Orencia: $814 million, up 9%
  • Sprycel: $541 million, up 6%
  • Yervoy: $510 million, up 38%
  • Abraxane: $296 million, down 4%
  • Empliciti: $86 million, down 11%
  • Zeposia: $28 million, versus $1 million in the prior year
  • Onureg: $12 million

Looking ahead:

Bristol Myers Squibb reaffirmed its 2021 profit forecast of $7.35 to $7.55 per share, with revenues increasing at a high-single-digit percentage rate.

Meanwhile, Elkins suggested that Bristol Myers Squibb will continue to undertake transactions to build out its drug portfolio, though it will focus on deals for individual products rather than large-scale purchases. "With the financial flexibility we have, we are really focusing on replenishing and diversifying the portfolio," Elkins remarked.

Pipeline updates:

Bristol Myers Squibb disclosed Wednesday that the Phase III CheckMate -649 trial of Opdivo (nivolumab) plus Yervoy (ipilimumab) compared to chemotherapy as a first-line treatment for metastatic gastric cancer, gastroesophageal junction cancer or oesophageal adenocarcinoma in patients whose tumours express PD-L1 with a combined positive score (CPS) ≥ 5 failed to meet the secondary endpoint of overall survival at the final analysis. However, the company noted that the data have no impact on the US indication for Opdivo plus chemotherapy for use in these patients, regardless of PD-L1 expression status, which received full approval from the FDA based on results from CheckMate -649.

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