French drugmaker Ipsen says that first-half 2007 group sales reached 463.2 million euros, a rise of 7.6%, despite the problems it is still facing on home soil as a result of price cuts there.

Combined revenues from the UK, Germany, France, Spain and Italy were up 2.7% at 283 million euros, with strong sales of Decapeptyl (triptorelin pamoate) for prostate cancer, in the first two countries, plus increased revenues in the UK from Dysport (botulinum toxin type A) for wrinkles making up for the negative price impact suffered in France and Italy. Sales in the rest of the world (excluding other European countries) reached 74.1 million euros, up 20.1%, driven by strong sales of its Somatuline (lanreotide) range of drugs for acromegaly and neuroendocrine tumours in the Middle East, a good performance from Dysport in Brazil and increased demand in China for the diarrhoea treatment Smecta (dioctahedral smectite).

Ipsen’s recombinant human growth hormone NutropinAq (controlled-release somatropin) is also selling well and the firm declared itself pleased with its first-half performance on the whole. It is also confident of a strong second half in 2007 and repeated its full year objective of 6.5%-7.5% sales growth. This forecast now includes the 10% price decrease implemented on its gingko biloba extract Tanakan in France in July, the company said, adding that its full-year operating margin guidance of 22%-23% will be updated on August 29.