The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Ranbaxy net profit triples

New Delhi, April 29: Ranbaxy, the country’s leading drug maker, today said its first-quarter profit for the current calendar year nearly tripled on the back of rising exports of generic drugs and higher domestic sales.

The New Delhi-based firm said in a statement that net profit for the period stood at Rs 280 crore against Rs 94.9 crore in the year ago period while sales grew by 90 per cent to Rs 1,049 crore.

Exports, which constitute around 79 per cent of total sales, grew by 161 per cent to Rs 829 crore, the statement added.

During the quarter, the firm had clocked higher exports of generic versions of Roche's anti-acne drug Accutane and GlaxoSmithKline’s antibiotic Augmentin to the United States.

“The firm's operations in the US market continued to play a pivotal role in its performance,” the firm's official spokesperson said.

Sales in the US market contributed around half of the firm’s global sales of around Rs 1,112 crore which rose by 51 per cent. Net global profit stood at a higher Rs 173 crore, clocking a growth of 77 per cent.

The official also said the firm has registered strong sales of a generic version of the antibiotic Ceftin for the 2002 year in the US where it is the sole seller besides GlaxoSmithKline.

Analysts said that the firm along with other Indian drug companies such as Dr Reddy's Laboratories and Cipla have done well due to the copycat versions of drugs going off patent.

“However, the other drug makers would report lower quarterly results as they lack new blockbuster drugs,” said the analyst with a leading brokerage firm.

The analyst also said that domestic drug sales across the sector are expected to take a hit after distributors refused to buy fresh stocks and concentrated on clearing out old inventory amid uncertainty over a new value added tax.

After the results, the firm's shares gained 3.3 per cent to Rs 673.10 while the benchmark 30-script Bombay Stock Exchange index registered a meagre 0.58 per cent rise.

The firm also declared a higher earnings-per-share of Rs 15 for the first quarter against Rs 5.11 for the corresponding period in the 2001 calendar year.

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