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Cornerstone 4Q profit falls on costs

Thu, 03/04/2010 - 6:17am
The Associated Press

Cornerstone Therapeutics Inc. said Thursday its fourth-quarter profit fell 6 percent on higher sales costs and a tax provision.

The pharmaceutical company has been boosting its sales force and management ranks, increasing spending on marketing by $1.8 million for the three months of the year, and $10.6 million over the year.

Cornerstone has also ramped up marketing campaigns for the launch of the drugs Zyflo, Factive and Curosurf.

The company earned $2.7 million, or 10 cents per share, compared with profit of $2.9 million, or 26 cents per share, a year ago. The most recent period included about 15 additional shares of common stock outstanding. Revenue rose to $30.8 million from $20.8 million.

Sales of Curosurf, which treats respiratory distress syndrome in premature babies, was $8.3 million. Meanwhile, the antibiotics Factive and Spactracef had combined revenue of $3.6 million.Sales of the asthma treatment Zyflo CR and Zyflo had revenue of $4.1 million.

Operating costs rose 31 percent to $27.3 million and the company had a $3.5 million provision for taxes, compared with a slight benefit the prior year.

For the full year, the company earned $10.2 million, or 54 cents per share, compared with $9 million, or $1.14 per share, in 2008. Revenue rose to $109.6 million from $64.9 million.

Looking ahead, the company expects revenue of more than $112 million in 2010.

Shares of Cornerstone rose 21 cents, or 4 percent, to $5.47. The stock has traded between $2.73 and $12.29 over the last 52 weeks.

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