Novartis' financials for the second quarter show that net profit slipped 5% to $2.55 billion, while sales inched up 1% at $14.49 billion.
Sales of Novartis' blood pressure lowerer Diovan (valsartan) were down 27% to $928 million, due to generic competition in Europe. Although off-patent in the USA, Novartis is still benefitting from the fact that the Food and Drug Administration has yet to approve any competitor for Diovan monotherapy.
Turnover from Glivec/Gleevec (imatinib), for chronic myeloid leukaemia and gastrointestinal stromal tumours were flat at $1.19 billion, while the successor to Glivec, Tasigna (nilotinib), also approved for CML, contributed $315 million, up 33%.
Sales of Lucentis (ranibizumab) for the treatment of age-related macular degeneration fell 5% to $576 million, while kidney cancer drug Afinitor (everolimus) soared 76% to $308 million, Turnover from the diabetes drug Galvus (vildagliptin) climbed 29% to $289 million, while the oral multiple sclerosis drug Gilenya brought in $468 million, up 65%.
Chief executive Joe Jimenez (pictured) said that "successful execution on growth brands allowed us to navigate patent expiries and new competition, while deepening our footprint in emerging growth markets". He was particularly pleased with Novartis' performance in China, where sales rose 25%, and in Russia.