Are Investors Giving Alexion Enough Credit for Earnings?

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Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: ALXN) reported its most recent quarterly results before the markets opened on Wednesday. The company said that it had $2.02 in earnings per share (EPS) and $1.03 billion in revenue, which compares with consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters of $1.74 in EPS and $1.02 billion in revenue. In the third quarter of last year, Alexion said it had $1.44 in EPS on $859 million in revenue.

During this past quarter, Alexion made significant progress diversifying its portfolio with the anticipated acquisition of Syntimmune and a collaboration with Dicerna.

In terms of its products, the company reported as follows:

  • Soliris net sales increased 17.6% year over year to $888.0 million.
  • Strensiq net sales increased 30.1% to $113.2 million.
  • Kanuma net sales increased 54.3% to $25.3 million.

The company updated its guidance for the full year. Alexion now expects to see EPS in the range of $7.45 to $7.60 and revenues between $4.02 billion and $4.05 billion. The previous guidance called for EPS of $7.00 to $7.15 and revenues of $3.98 billion to $4.01 billion. Consensus estimates are calling for $7.24 in EPS and $4.04 billion in revenue for the year.

Ludwig Hantson, Ph.D., CEO of Alexion, commented:

We continued to execute on our key objectives this quarter, further strengthening our core business and again delivering strong top and bottom-line growth. Following the groundbreaking Phase 3 results of eculizumab in NMOSD, we are moving quickly to prepare global regulatory submissions, which could make it the first approved therapy for patients with this devastating disease. Our teams continue to demonstrate launch excellence with sustained growth of Soliris in gMG.

Shares of Alexion closed Tuesday at $123.00, with a consensus analyst price target of $159.12 and a 52-week range of $102.10 to $140.77. Following the announcement, the stock was down more than 3% at $119.13 just after the opening bell.