Johnson & Johnson says it is looking to have ten new pharma products on the market in the next four years as it looks to build on a strong 2012.
Speaking at an analysts’ meeting this week, the firm said its ten new medicines include: simeprevir for hepatitis C; ibrutinib and daratumumab for blood cancers; sirukumab and guselkumab for diseases of the immune system and vaccines for influenza, rabies and polio.Janssen,as its pharmaceuticals unit is known, said that there also are plans to improve more than 25 current drugs during the same period.
The pharma unit of Johnson & Johnson has yielded 11 new product launches since 2009, more than doubling its productivity over the past four years.
These new products have included the oral anticoagulant Xarelto, developed in conjunction with Bayer, and prostate cancer pill Zytiga, both of which analysts have tipped as future blockbusters.
And these new therapies developed both in-house and acquired from outside may keep J&J at the forefront of the industry, where its pharmaceutical business was the fastest growing in 2012 among the largest companies, according to IMS Health.
But it has been a tough few years for the US giant as continual manufacturing and production problems have beset the firm, notably for its big selling consumer brands.
This has tarnished its reputation and caused it financial headaches with fines and capacity restrictions, as well as governmental decrees against three of its plants in the US and Puerto Rico.
The firm is still dealing with the fallout from this, but it looks to have put the worst of these problems behind it, with 2014 looking to be the first year most of its three affected sites will get back to normal.
Joaquin Duato, worldwide chairman pharmaceuticals group, said: “We’ve spent the past five years transforming our business, and the growth we’re seeing today is the direct impact of that effort. The innovative new therapies in our pipeline will drive our next wave of growth.
“With strong momentum across our global pharmaceuticals segment, we are executing well against our commercial strategy to gain market share and ensure greater access to our medicines. We’re also strengthening our presence in critical geographies and have nearly doubled our footprint in emerging markets during the last five years.”
The firm said it’s focused on expanding business in emerging markets such as China, Brazil and India, which IMS Health says accounted for almost 20% of sales in the first quarter.
“The outlook for J&J’s pharma business appears bright,” says Michael Weinstein, an analyst at JPMorgan Chase & Co. in New York.
He estimated sales growth of 7.5% in 2013 and 5 – 7% through 2016 for the firm. “It’s a combination of base business products that continue to perform well coupled with new product launches layering on additional growth,” he added in a note to clients.