Biogen, Inc. (NASDAQ: BGEN) Chairman and Chief Executive Officer James Mullen today outlined the company’s strategy to reach an average earnings growth rate of 20 percent over the next three years. Mr. Mullen’s remarks were presented at the J.P. Morgan H&Q; 21st Annual Healthcare Conference.
The presentation highlighted Biogen’s overall strategy for long-term growth, financial targets and profile for 2005. Mr. Mullen also discussed Biogen’s progress towards diversifying the company’s sources of product revenue. Currently, Biogen markets AVONEX® (Interferon beta-1a), the world’s leading therapy for relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (MS). AVONEX revenues exceeded $1 billion in 2002. The company expects the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to approve AMEVIVE® (alefacept) in the first quarter of 2003. In addition, ANTEGREN® (natulizumab), which Biogen is developing with Elan Corporation, is currently in Phase 3 clinical trials for MS and Crohn’s disease. The results of ANTEGREN’s Phase 2 clinical trials were recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Finally, Mr. Mullen outlined Biogen’s strategy for expanding the company’s neurology and dermatology franchises by 2005 through additional commercial collaborations that will leverage Biogen’s global infrastructure.
In his presentation, Mr. Mullen concluded, “Our goal is to grow revenues over the next three years to $2 billion. We expect Biogen’s net margin will increase to 22 to 25 percent by 2005 as a result of improved operating margins. When you combine these two factors, they drive Biogen to an earnings growth rate averaging about 20 percent over the next few years.”
To access the live webcast at 4:30 pm (PST), please visit Biogen’s homepage, www.biogen.com. An archived webcast will be available for 30 days following the presentation.
2003 guidance will be provided on the year-end earnings conference call scheduled for January 28, 2003 at 8:30 am EST.
FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS/ SAFE HARBOR
This press release contains forward-looking statements regarding expected future financial results, anticipated regulatory approval of AMEVIVE, and implementing pipeline and in-licensing strategies in the neurology and dermatology franchises.
These statements are based on the Company’s current beliefs and expectations. A number of risks and uncertainties could cause actual results to differ materially. For example, financial results, including revenues and earnings growth and improved operating margins, may be affected by the impact of competitive products on AVONEX sales, any slowing of growth of the multiple sclerosis market, any change in market acceptance of AVONEX in key markets worldwide, any unanticipated increase in expenses including in the areas of research and development and sales and marketing, the impact of litigation and patent-related events, and in-licensing and product opportunities. Approval and commercial launch of AMEVIVE is subject to the Company’s ability to work with FDA to adequately address questions and provide the clarification and information requested by the FDA during its review of AMEVIVE. The potential for AMEVIVE and the Company’s pipeline are also subject to the risks inherent in drug development, including the risk of unexpected new data or information, unexpected technical or manufacturing issues, intellectual property disputes and the ability to enter into agreements with third parties on acceptable terms. Drug development involves a high degree of risk. Only a small number of research and development programs result in the commercialization of a product. Success in early stage clinical trials does not ensure that later stage or larger scale clinical trials will be successful.
For more detailed information on the risks and uncertainties associated with these forward looking statements and the Company’s other activities see the Outlook section in MD&A; of the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company does not undertake any obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statements.
Biogen is the world’s oldest independent biotechnology company and a leader in biologics research, development and manufacturing. A pioneer in leading edge research in immunology, neurobiology and oncology, Biogen brings novel therapies to improve patients’ lives around the world through its global marketing capabilities. For press releases and additional information about the company, please visit http://www.biogen.com.