By Jaimy Lee
The drugmaker expects to produce more than 2 million courses of COVID-19 treatment remdesivir by the end of the year
Shares of Gilead Sciences Inc. (GILD) fell 3.5% in premarket trade Friday, after the drugmaker reported that it swung to a large loss during the second quarter and missed estimates even after adjusting for an acquisition.
Though the drugmaker's COVID-19 drug remdesivir will likely be a major topic during the company's call with investors, the company has not recorded any sales for the medication, given that it had donated the drug for free through June.
Gilead reported a loss of $3.33 billion, or $2.66 a share, in the second quarter of 2020, compared with a gain of $1.88 billion, or $1.47 a share, in the year-ago quarter. Gilead attributed the quarter's loss to a $4.5 billion charge for the company's acquisition () of immuno-oncology company Forty Seven Inc. in April.
After adjusting for that charge and other factors, Gilead reported earnings of $1.11 a share, which failed to hit analysts' average estimates. Revenue fell to $5.14 billion in the quarter, down from $5.68 billion in the like quarter a year ago. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had estimated adjusted earnings of $1.47 per share on revenue of $5.28 billion.
"The drawdown of 1Q's accelerated purchases and one-time items, coupled with remdesivir investments and expected lower PrEP/[hepatitis C] usage, hampered 2Q20 numbers even more so than expected," RBC Capital Markets' Brian Abraham told investors on Thursday.
When Gilead reported its first-quarter results (), it had not yet received emergency authorization from the Food and Drug Administration for remdesivir, its experimental treatment for patients with COVID-19. Per the terms of the emergency use authorization ( ) granted on May 1, the U.S. government is charged with dispensing the medication, though Gilead has also established supply agreements with other countries, and the drug has received full regulatory approval in markets like Japan under the name Veklury.
Gilead said Thursday that it expects to produce more than 2 million courses of remdesivir by the end of the year. Its research and development costs for the quarter soared to $1.3 billion, up from $995 million in the second quarter of last year, with the company citing higher clinical trial and manufacturing expenses related to remdesivir.
It is unclear whether remdesivir will be a moneymaker for the drugmaker, though some analysts have predicted at least $1.5 billion in sales of the drug this year alone. Gilead has also recently announced that it will study the infused drug in pregnant women, in children, in combination with other treatments, and in an inhaled format.
Like many pharmaceutical companies, Gilead is seeing a decline in sales of drugs during a quarter in which people around the world stayed at home to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
Sales of HIV drugs were $4.0 billion for the quarter, compared with $4.01 billion a year ago, as some medications saw a boost in sales while others declined.
Sales of Descovy rose to $417 million in the second quarter, compared with $358 million in the same quarter a year ago, while sales of Truvada, which is prescribed sometimes for pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), were halved, tumbling to $387 million during the last three months, compared with $718 million in the same period a year ago. The company cited lower PrEP demand as a result of the pandemic, "driven by reduced initiations and therapy discontinuations due to reduced [health care provider] visits and impact on social dynamics."
SVB Leerink's Geoffrey Porges had told investors last week to expect sales of Gilead's HIV prevention drugs "to be materially lower than prior periods given social distancing."
Gilead's stock is up 10.9% since the start of the year, while the broader S&P 500 has gained 0.8%.
-Jaimy Lee; 415-439-6400; AskNewswires@dowjones.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
July 31, 2020 06:13 ET (10:13 GMT)
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