AstraZeneca PLC, Fourth Quarter and Full Year Results 2007

LONDON, Jan. 31, 2008-- David Brennan, Chief Executive Officer, said: “The strong underlying results for the full year reflect our determined action in three priority areas: our pipeline is significantly stronger, with the acquisition of MedImmune creating a leading position in biologics; key product sales have been robust in major markets and we have achieved strong growth in the emerging markets; and productivity initiatives, including the restructuring programme, are progressing to plan. I am confident that we are taking the right steps to better position AstraZeneca as we, and the industry, encounter increasingly challenging market conditions.”

Sales in the fourth quarter were $8,170 million, up 8 percent at CER, or 14 percent on an as reported basis (including an exchange benefit of 6 percent). The inclusion of MedImmune more than offset the decline in Toprol-XL™ sales in the US. Reported sales in the US were up 8 percent. Reported sales in the Rest of World increased 8 percent, as Established Markets were up 5 percent and Emerging Markets saw growth of 18 percent.

Operating profit in the fourth quarter was $1,929 million (7 percent lower than the fourth quarter last year). Excluding restructuring and synergy costs, operating profit increased to $2,291 million (up 11 percent). Reported EPS for the fourth quarter 2007 was $0.86 compared with $0.93 last year. Excluding restructuring and synergy costs, earnings per share increased 10 percent at constant currency.

In the fourth quarter, US sales of Nexium™ were down 18 percent, as an estimated underlying demand increase of 2 percent was offset by a large negative price variance. Nearly 5 percentage points of the price variance is attributable to the favourable impact of the release of the TriCare provision in the fourth quarter of 2006. The balance of the price variance is attributable to lower contract prices exacerbated by a pronounced mix effect, arising from volumes shifting to customer segments with higher discounts and a declining proportion of non-contract sales; this shift in mix occurred over the course of the entire year, but is particularly evident in the fourth quarter year-on-year comparison. For 2008, average realised prices are expected to continue to decline, but not at the rate implied by the fourth quarter performance.



Please see the attachments for the complete financials.


Media Enquiries:
Steve Brown/Edel McCaffrey (London) - (020) 7304 5033/5034
Staffan Ternby (Södertälje) - (8) 553 26107
Earl Whipple (Wilmington) - (302) 885 8197

Analyst/Investor Enquiries:
Karl Hard/Jonathan Hunt (London) - (020) 7304 5322/5087
Staffan Ternby (Södertälje) - (8) 553 26107
Ed Seage/Jörgen Winroth (USA) - (302) 886 4065/(212) 579 0506
Peter Vozzo (MedImmune) - (301) 398 4358

Posted: January 2008


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