Cardinal Health profits increase in first quarter

Pharmaceutical segment sales decline partially offset by volume from new, existing customers

DUBLIN, Ohio — Cardinal Health had sales of $24.5 billion and profits of $339 million in first quarter 2014, the company said.

The results, announced Thursday, respectively represented a 5% decrease and 25% increase over first quarter 2013.

"We are off to an outstanding start to fiscal 2014, with both segments achieving strong margin expansion and earnings growth in the first quarter," Cardinal Health chairman and CEO George Barrett said. "Our pharmaceutical segment performance demonstrated balance across the business, with robust results in both our generic and branded programs. Our medical segment made excellent progress on its key priorities, building the portfolio of preferred products, achieving results from efficiency initiatives, growing strategic hospital network accounts and integrating the 2013 acquisition of AssuraMed."

Sales in the pharmaceutical segment declined by 7%, to $21.8 billion, as the company expected, due to the Sept. 30, 2012 expiration of a contract with Express Scripts and an Aug. 31, 2013 expiration of a Walgreens contract, though growth in volume from new and existing customers offset the decline. Profits for the segment were $433 million, an 8% increase over last year.

In the medical segment, sales increased by 13%, to $2.7 billion, due to the acquisition of AssuraMed, a distributor of medical products for the home, early in 2013. There was also strong growth in the segment's hospital network account. Profits were $106 million, a 43% increase over last year.


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