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Chantix slash costs


The maker of Lipitor, Viagra and anti-smoking drug Chantix is $2.88 billion in the black after slashing costs on everything from manufacturing and marketing to research and development.

The bottom line increased by 26% compared with a year earlier, when the company had a $640 million legal charge over promotion of its painkillers, on sales of $11.62 billion – down 3%. Analyst Dr Timothy Anderson, of Bernstein Research, says if not for a 5% reduction due to unfavourable exchange rates, sales would have been up by a “modest” 2%. Sales fell across all five of Pfizer’s business divisions, the worst being 12% in the established products business – this sells prescription drugs, which are continuing to lose sales to generic competition.

Sales declined up to 5% in businesses selling primary care, speciality care and cancer drugs, and ones selling to emerging markets such as China and India. The company says it will continue cutting costs, which is likely to involve shedding 20,000 jobs, after its $68 billion acquisition of Wyeth.

Copyright Press Association 2009

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