Roche warned of a decline in 2023 earnings, as revenue growth from new drugs including haemophilia treatment Hemlibra and multiple sclerosis drug Ocrevus would not make up for a steep demand drop for COVID treatments and diagnostic testing.
Sales and core earnings per share were expected to decrease at a “low single-digit” percentage this year, the Swiss drugmaker said in a statement on Thursday. Last year, group revenue edged 1% higher to 63.3 billion Swiss francs ($69.78 billion), the company reported, beating market expectations of 63.2 billion francs, while core operating profit gained 1% to 22.2 billion Swiss francs, just shy of the average analyst estimate of 22.4 billion francs.
Analysts have said that market confidence in Roche’s drug development abilities, previously among the highest in the industry, has taken a blow from trial setbacks last year in Alzheimer’s disease and a cancer immunotherapy hopeful.
The onus to reinvigorate the pipeline will be on chief executive officer-designate Thomas Schinecker, who is Roche’s head of diagnostics, and due to be promoted to group CEO in March.
In the wake of Schinecker’s appointment, the head of Roche’s pharmaceuticals division, Bill Anderson, decided in December to leave after 16 years with the Swiss drugmaker.
Roche said on Thursday that Teresa Graham, currently Head of Global Product Strategy for Roche Pharmaceuticals, would succeed Anderson.