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King Pharmaceuticals Reports 1Q loss

Mon, 05/11/2009 - 4:44am
BRISTOL, Tenn. (AP) — Drug developer King Pharmaceuticals Inc. reported a first-quarter loss Monday on hefty buyout and restructuring costs, while revenue slipped partly on tougher generic competition. The company lost $10.7 million, or 4 cents per share, in the three months ended March 31 compared with profit of $85.6 million, or 35 cents per share, a year ago. Revenue slipped to $429 million from $432 million. Excluding a mix of charges and a one-time tax benefit, the company said it earned 26 cents per share. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected profit of 12 cents per share on higher revenue of $450.8 million. The earnings estimates typically exclude one-time items. Overall, sales of branded products fell 25 percent to $278 million, mainly on lower sales of the blood-pressure medication Altace. The company lost patent protection on the drug a year ago and faces increased generic competition in the market. Meanwhile, the company continues integrating operations from Alpharma, which it bought for $1.6 billion in December. That buyout gave the company Embeda, a morphine-based painkiller for chronic pain. It is intended to be abuse-resistant, with the effects of the morphine blocked if the pills are crushed, chewed or dissolved. King is also developing Remoxy, a long-acting version of the painkiller oxycodone. It expects to meet with the Food and Drug Administration in July to discuss ongoing issues with the company's application. The FDA is still reviewing the drug and has requested more data.
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