BioScrip reports spike in revenue in Q1
ELMSFORD, N.Y. BioScrip had losses of $7.2 million for the first quarter, due in part to $5.5 million in expenses related to the March acquisition of Critical Homecare Solutions and $1.5 million in bad debt expense related to the competitive acquisition program that was terminated in 2008, the specialty pharmacy company said Friday.
Still, revenues increased by nearly $10 million to $335.1 million, compared with $325.7 million in first quarter 2009, when the company had an income of $3.3 million. Gross profits for the quarter also increased to $38.9 million, from $36 million the year before.
“We are on target to achieve our planned cost synergies and have identified additional cost of goods savings,” Bioscrip chairman and CEO Richard Friedman said. “Furthermore, we are seeing tangible results from our cross-selling efforts and continue to believe that the combined platform positions BioScrip to be a leading national, specialty pharmacy provider.”
Shoppers Drug Mart sees growth in Q1
TORONTO One of Canada’s largest drug store chains reported a 5.7% increase in its first-quarter sales.
First-quarter sales increased to C $2.32 billion ($2.31 billion), compared with the same period last year. Shoppers also saw a 3.1% rise in same-store sales, and a 5.1% spike in front-end sales, totaling nearly C $1.17 billion ($1.16 billion).
Meanwhile, first-quarter net earnings rose 8.2% to $116 million or 53 cents per share (diluted) from $107 million or 49 cents per share (diluted) a year ago. Shoppers said this result was driven by top line growth, improved purchasing synergies and a continued emphasis on cost reduction, productivity and efficiency.
Commenting on the quarter, Jurgen Schreiber, president and CEO stated, “We are pleased with our first quarter results, especially in light of the fact that we experienced a weaker cough, cold and flu season compared to a year ago. In these challenging times for community pharmacy, particularly in the Province of Ontario, I am extremely proud of our Associate-owners and their teams as they work through this difficult period without ever losing sight of what matters most – the health and well-being of our valued patients and customers.”
During the quarter, 27 drug stores were opened or acquired, 11 of which were relocations, and one smaller drug store was closed. At quarter-end, Shoppers Drug Mart owned 1,303 stores, comprised of 1,234 drug stores (1,183 Shoppers Drug Mart/Pharmaprix stores and 51 Shoppers Simply Pharmacy/Pharmaprix Simplement Sante stores), 63 Shoppers Home Health Care stores and six Murale stores.
FDA approves Dendreon’s Provenge
SILVER SPRING, Md. The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new biotech drug for prostate cancer made by Seattle-based biotech company Dendreon, the agency said Thursday.
The FDA approved Provenge (sipuleucel-T), a therapy that treats advanced prostate cancer by stimulating the patient’s own immune system. Each dose is manufactured by obtaining a patient’s immune cells from the blood using a process called leukapheresis. The cells are then exposed to a protein found in most prostate cancers and then returned to the patient’s body. The treatment is given in a three-dose schedule at two-week intervals.
“The availability of Provenge provides a new treatment option for men with advanced prostate cancer, who currently have limited effective therapies available,” FDA Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research acting director Karen Midthun said.