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Richter Quarterly Profit Beats Expectations on Sales

Net income at Gedeon Richter Nyrt., Hungary’s biggest drugmaker, beat analysts’ expectations on rising sales in Russia and the United States.

Richter, which gets more than 80 percent of sales from exports, saw its sales decline in the first part of the year as economies contracted in key central and eastern European markets. The economy in Russia shrank 7.9 percent last year, the most on record.

“Sales performance was definitely stronger than forecast due to higher Russian and U.S. sales,” Akos Herczenik, an analyst at Raiffeisen Centrobank AG, said in a note to clients today. “We reckon a moderate positive market reaction is justified.”

Richter gained 885 forint, or 2.2 percent, to 40,800 forint by 9:07 a.m. in Budapest, rising for a second day. Richter shares have gained 41 percent in the past year, compared with a 71 percent increase in Hungary’s benchmark BUX index.

In Russia, the company’s biggest export market, sales rose 22 percent in the fourth quarter in euro terms, “although from a relatively low base,” the company said.

Richter said exports to the U.S. were boosted by a “significant increase” in sales of the emergency contraceptives Plan B and Plan B OneStep as well as profit sharing agreement with Montvale, New Jersey-based Barr Pharmaceuticals Inc., a subsidiary of Israeli drugmaker Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.

“It is the management’s belief that as far as profit sharing income is concerned, peak levels were achieved in 2009,” according to the earnings statement.


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