Sales & Earnings In Brief
This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet
Schering-Plough: Consumer health care sales advanced 2 percent in the firm's fiscal 2008 second quarter to $401 million, benefiting from the performance of laxative MiraLAX, which had sales of $28 million in the period, the Kenilworth, N.J.-based company reports July 21. MiraLAX, which was launched in February 2007 as the first Rx-to-OTC switch in the laxative category in more than 30 years, has reached the same market share as Metamucil in the powder laxative category, S-P claims ("The Tan Sheet" Dec. 11, 2006, p. 17). Consumer health sales growth was offset, however, by lower sales of OTCClaritin, which was negatively impacted by the timing of shipments, a less severe allergy season and increased competition, the company notes. Net sales in the quarter advanced 54.8 percent to $4.92 billion, including sales of Organon BioSciences, which S-P purchased in November. Net income fell 19 percent to $436 million, in part reflecting acquisition costs. The firm declined to comment on future plans for cholesterol-lowering drug Vytorin following news that it failed to benefit patients with a rare heart valve disorder. S-P markets Vytorin through a joint-venture with Merck...
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Fred Hassan assumed leadership of Schering-Plough in 2003 to revive a company hampered by legal, regulatory and financial difficulties. Schering was faced with a five-year FDA consent decree and the decline of its marquee prescription Claritin franchise. Hassan brought with him a reputation for successfully turning around struggling firms. He served as CEO of Pharmacia before selling the company to Pfizer in 2002. Prior to joining Pharmacia, Hassan served as executive VP-pharmaceuticals & medical products at Wyeth. Hassan discussed a number of issues facing Schering in 2005 with "The Tan Sheet" on Feb. 8.