AstraZeneca PLC: Year-to-Date and Q3 2018 Results

Product Sales increased by 4% in the year to date (2% at CER1), supporting full-year guidance. For the quarter, Product Sales increased by 8% (9% at CER), driven by the strong performance of new medicines2 (+85%, +86% at CER) and the sustained strength of Emerging Markets (+12%, +16% at CER). Oncology sales increased by 56% in the quarter (57% at CER); China and US sales increased by 32% and 25%, respectively. The pipeline, designed to deliver sustainable growth and advances in treatment for patients, produced further positive news flow in the period; regular, additional news will continue. The Company is on track to deliver its FY 2018 Product Sales and Core EPS guidance.



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Pascal Soriot, Chief Executive Officer, commenting on the results said:

"Today marks an important day for the future of AstraZeneca, with the performance in the quarter and year to date showing what we expect will be the start of a period of sustained growth for years to come. Commercial execution has been exceptional and our new medicines are now firmly established as the drivers of growth, supporting our continued success in Emerging Markets.

These new medicines are showing great promise, including Tagrisso, Imfinzi, Lynparza in cancer, Farxiga in diabetes and Fasenra in severe asthma. We're also continuing to replenish our early-stage pipeline as we bring our innovative medicines to patients around the world."

Financial Highlights

•     Product Sales increased by 4% in the year to date (2% at CER) to $15,281m; new medicines generated additional sales of $1.8bn at CER

•     The Reported Gross Margin declined by two percentage points to 78% in the year to date, partly reflecting the favourable impact of manufacturing variances in the first half of 2017 and the dilutive effect of the Lynparza collaboration with MSD5; the Core Gross Margin declined by two percentage points to 80%

•     Productivity gains, simplification and the focus on costs continued, with prioritised investment in new medicines and in China delivering strong returns

Total Reported Operating Expenses were stable in the year to date (down by 2% at CER) to $11,589m. Total Core Operating Expenses increased by 4% (2% at CER) to $10,253m

Reported R&D costs declined by 7% in the year to date (8% at CER) to $3,920m; Core R&D costs declined by 4% (6% at CER) to $3,800m, driven by efficiency savings and resource optimisation. Reported SG&A costs increased by 4% in the year to date (1% at CER) to $7,431m; Core SG&A costs increased by 10% (7% at CER) to $6,215m, reflecting support for new medicines and growth in China

•     Externalisation Revenue declined by 81% in the year to date to $392m, partly driven by the impact of $997m of income in YTD 2017 as part of the aforementioned collaboration with MSD. Reported Other Operating Income & Expense increased by 55% to $1,525m; Core Other Operating Income & Expense increased by 4% in the year to date (3% at CER) to $1,143m, with the difference between the Reported and Core performances reflecting a legal settlement in the first half of the year. The Company anticipates a significant sum of Externalisation Revenue and Other Operating Income & Expense in the final quarter of the year

•     Restructuring costs declined to $271m in the year to date (YTD 2017: $645m); capital expenditure also declined to $728m (YTD 2017: $849m). The Company continues to anticipate declines in restructuring costs and capital expenditure over the full year

•     Reported EPS of $0.88 in the year to date represented a decline of 34%. The performance reflected a decline in Total Revenue, the Reported Gross Margin and the increase in Reported SG&A costs. Core EPS declined by 37% to $1.88.

Reporting Calendar

The Company intends to publish its full-year and fourth-quarter financial results on 14 February 2019.

Operating and Financial Review

All narrative on growth and results in this section is based on actual exchange rates, unless stated otherwise. Financial figures are in US$ millions ($m). The performance shown in this announcement covers the nine-month period to 30 September 2018 (the year to date or YTD 2018) and the three-month period to 30 September 2018 (the quarter, the third quarter or Q3 2018) compared to the nine-month period to 30 September 2017 (YTD 2017) and the three-month period to 30 September 2017 (Q3 2017) respectively, unless stated otherwise. All commentary in the Operating and Financial Review relates to the year to date, unless stated otherwise.

Core financial measures, EBITDA, Net Debt, Initial Externalisation Revenue and Ongoing Externalisation Revenue are non-GAAP financial measures because they cannot be derived directly from the Group Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements. Management believes that these non-GAAP financial measures, when provided in combination with Reported results, will provide investors and analysts with helpful supplementary information to understand better the financial performance and position of the Company on a comparable basis from period to period. These non-GAAP financial measures are not a substitute for, or superior to, financial measures prepared in accordance with GAAP. Core financial measures are adjusted to exclude certain significant items, such as:

·      Amortisation and impairment of intangible assets, including impairment reversals but excluding any charges relating to IT assets

·      Charges and provisions related to global restructuring programmes, which includes charges that relate to the impact of global restructuring programmes on capitalised IT assets

·      Other specified items, principally comprising acquisition-related costs, which include fair-value adjustments and the imputed finance charge relating to contingent consideration on business combinations, legal settlements and foreign-exchange gains and losses on certain non-structural intra-group loans

Details on the nature of Core financial measures are provided on page 68 of the Annual Report and Form 20-F Information 2017. Reference should be made to the reconciliation of Core to Reported financial information and the Reconciliation of Reported to Core Financial Measures tables included in the Financial Performance section of this announcement.

EBITDA is defined as Reported Profit Before Tax after adding back Net Finance Expense, results from Joint Ventures and Associates and charges for Depreciation, Amortisation and Impairment. Reference should be made to the Reconciliation of Reported Profit Before Tax to EBITDA included in the Financial Performance section of this announcement.

Net Debt is defined as interest-bearing loans and borrowings net of cash and cash equivalents, other investments and net derivative financial instruments. Reference should be made to Note 3 'Net Debt' included in the Notes to the Interim Financial Statements section of this announcement. Ongoing Externalisation Revenue is defined as Externalisation Revenue excluding Initial Externalisation Revenue (which is defined as Externalisation Revenue that is recognised at the date of completion of an agreement or transaction, in respect of upfront consideration). Ongoing Externalisation Revenue comprises, among other items, royalties, milestone revenue and profit-sharing income. Reference should be made to the Breakdown of Externalisation Revenue table in this Operating and Financial Review.

The Company strongly encourages investors and analysts not to rely on any single financial measure, but to review AstraZeneca's financial statements, including the notes thereto and other available Company reports, carefully and in their entirety.