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Sun Pharma reports 7% rise in net profit; analysts on wait and watch mode for 'Yonsa'

Just prior to the results, on May 23, Sun Pharma had announced that the US drug regulator USFDA (US Food and Drug Administration) approved Yonsa, its drug to treat a kind of prostate cancer.

twitter-logo E Kumar Sharma   New Delhi     Last Updated: May 25, 2018  | 20:03 IST
Sun Pharma reports 7% rise in net profit; analysts on wait and watch mode for 'Yonsa'

Sun Pharma, India's largest pharmaceutical company reported a 7 per cent increase in its consolidated net profit at Rs 1,308 crore, up from Rs 1,223.71 crore, in the same period previous year. The company's revenue in the period stood at Rs 6977.10 crore as compared to Rs 7136.96 crore, in the corresponding period last year. However, for the full year, it posted an income of Rs 26,066 crore, a de-growth of 14 per cent over the same period last year and in constant currency terms a de-growth of 9.5 per cent over last year.

Speaking on the earning results, Dilip Shanghvi, the managing Director of Sun Pharmaceuticals, said: "Over the last four quarters, we have been able to record a gradual improvement in performance despite a challenging US generic pricing environment. FY19 will mark the crossing of some important milestones in our specialty journey, with the likely launch of 3 specialty products in the US - Ilumya, OTX-101 and Yonsa."

Just prior to the results, on May 23, Sun Pharma had announced that the US drug regulator USFDA (US Food and Drug Administration) approved Yonsa, its drug to treat a kind of prostate cancer. The media release issued by the company says, "Churchill is eligible to receive upfront and sales-linked milestone payments, and royalties on sales from Sun Pharma pursuant to an agreement between the two companies to commercialize YONSA in the U.S." It is a new formulation in combination with 'methylprednisolone', a  steroid.

Clearly, the company sees, Yonsa becoming a major milestone in its journey. And hopes it would help them emerge as a company focused on specialities, rather than just being a generic player. But then, the analysts still are doubtful about the dent Yonsa can make. For the moment, there are several questions answered. Firstly, how will the company form a market for this product, particularly, because the Yonsa is trying to directly compete with Johnson & Johnson's Zytiga, which is expected sometime this year.

Some analysts are also questioning if it really presents big opportunities, because if Churchill believed that this was a large product it could have signed up with a larger global pharma company rather than Sun Pharma. Hence, they would prefer to wait and watch as little is known on its likely market size. It is for castration-resistant prostate cancer, or to be precise, it is for the treatment of  patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC).

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