Belgian drugmaker Solvay saw its net income for the first nine months of 2005 rocket 65% to 685 million euros, already beating that generated for the full year of 2004 by 27%. Net earnings per share were 8.01 euros versus 4.60 for the year-ago period.

The groups’ performance was driven by a solid rise in sales, growing 15% to reach 6.2 billion euros on robust performances by all its divisions. The strongest growth was achieved by the pharmaceuticals unit, with turnover up 19% at 1.6 billion euros, followed by chemicals and plastics, rising 15% to 2.1 billion euros and 13% to 2.6 billion euros, respectively.

Nineteen percent growth of sales of pharmaceuticals was driven by Solvay’s 1.2 billion euro acquisition of Fournier Pharma earlier this year [[24/03/05a]] [[13/07/05c]], bringing in extra revenues of 99 million euros for the two months since the acquisition was finalized and beating Solvay’s own expectations.

According to the firm, all therapeutic areas except gastroenterology turned in revenue growth, leading to operating income of 194 million euros for the unit, including a 23 million euro compensation payment from Barr and 12 million euros from the sale of minor products.