Cephalon has posted a strong set of financials for the fourth quarter and is predicting a strong 2010 helped by its proposed acquistion of the Swiss generics firm Mepha.

Net income leapt to $96.6 million from just $5 million in the like, year-earlier period, when the company was hit by a series of charges. Revenues were up 6.5% to $575.1 million.

Sales of the company's lead product, the sleep disorder drug Provigil (modanafil) slipped 10.6% to $251.3 million as patients started switching to the follow-up long-acting drug Nuvigil (armodafinil). The latter contributed $35.6 million, down on analyst estimates. More impressive was the performance of the cancer drug Treanda (bendamustine), sales of which leapt 70.0% to $61.6 million.

Full-year sales topped $2 billion for the tenth year running and Cephalon chief executive Frank Baldino said 2009 was “a year of extraordinary innovation and growth”. He added that the company reported positive clinical study results on several drug candidates, “advanced five new compounds into man and continued to acquire promising assets”.

Key among those is the Mepha and assuming it closes on April 1, the company says it expects 2010 sales of $2.61-$2.69 billion and adjusted earnings of $6.80-$7.00 per share, excluding items. Cowen and Co analyst Craig Gordon issued a research note saying that the 2010 guidance “is actually modestly better than what we thought and clearly better than what the Street thought”.