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Allergan Posts 8% Gain in 4th-Quarter Profit

February 03, 2006|From Associated Press

Allergan Inc., best known for its Botox wrinkle treatment, said Thursday that its fourth-quarter profit increased 8% on the strength of higher pharmaceutical sales.

Net income grew to $122 million, or 90 cents a share, from $112.5 million, or 85 cents, a year earlier. Excluding restructuring and other charges, the company reported adjusted earnings of $124.3 million, or 91 cents.

Revenue rose 7% to $594.9 million from $556.2 million in 2004, with pharmaceutical sales up 11%. Eye-care sales rose 13% to $340.6 million.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial expected earnings per share of 89 cents on revenue of $583.7 million for the quarter.

"It appears to be another high-quality quarter from Allergan, but one marked by one of the slowest growth in eye-care pharmaceuticals in two years and the slowest growth in Botox ever," Banc of America Securities analyst David Maris wrote in a note Thursday.

Allergan's Botox sales during the quarter were $227.3 million. Maris had been expecting Botox sales to hit about $235 million.

Investors seemed to take note of the lighter Botox and eye-care product sales, driving shares of Irvine-based Allergan down $1.77, or 1.5%, to $113.09.

David Pyott, Allergan's chairman, president and chief executive, said he expected the Federal Trade Commission to clear Allergan's acquisition of Santa Barbara-based Inamed Corp. within a few weeks.

"We're down to the last details.... I have a fairly high degree of confidence that we're not so far away in terms of time," Pyott told Wall Street analysts during a conference call Thursday.

Allergan made a $3.2-billion cash-and-stock offer for Inamed in November. Inamed makes a range of "dermal filler" products used to smooth wrinkles that Allergan sees as a complement to its market-leading Botox treatment.

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