Valeant sales hit by currency woes

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Valeant, the besieged Canadian drugmaker, said sales fell 7 per cent in 2016 following a sharp decline in existing product sales and a hit from unfavourable currency moves.

Total revenues were $9.67bn compared to $10.45bn in 2015 and were broadly in line with analysts expectations of $9.6bn. Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization were down 20 per cent on the year to $4.3bn, slightly ahead of analysts’ forecast.

Shares in Valeant dropped more than 20 per cent last year after the drugmaker warned its profits and sales would continue to tumble in 2017, dashing investor hopes the company will turn itself round any time soon.

Valeant said on Tuesday it had “stabilized the business” but warned that 2017 would continue “to be a challenging year.”

Joseph C. Papa, chairman and chief executive said:

Over the past few months, our teams worked to stabilize and strengthen our core businesses, resolve legacy issues, improve operational processes, launch new products, and improve the balance sheet and capital structure.

The company has previously warned of a “growth hole” caused by the loss of patent protection on a host of expensive medicines, which have been subject to months of criticism from politicians and patients following a string of huge price increases.

The company said total revenues would be in the $8.9bn to $9.1bn range this year. It had previously expected revenues to be in a range of between $9.55bn to $9.65bn, which was already a downgrade on previous estimates.

Shares were down 1.86 per cent in pre-market trading at $16.40.

With sales and profits on a downward trajectory, many investors fear the company will struggle to service its more than $30bn of net debt, amassed during a decades-long acquisition spree that briefly turned the drugmaker into one of the world’s largest pharma groups.

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