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Amgen profit rises 40% on lower costs

July 28, 2009|W.J. Hennigan

Biotech giant Amgen Inc. saw its stock rise in after-hours trading Monday after it increased its full-year profit outlook and announced a $120-million partnership for a potential blockbuster drug.

The Thousand Oaks firm, which saw its quarterly profit grow 40% from a year earlier, chalked up the jump to cost-cutting measures and a restructuring program.

Amgen earned $1.27 billion, or $1.25 a share, in the second quarter. Analysts had expected $1.16 a share.

The jump in profit prompted Amgen to adjust yearly expectations to as much as $4.95 a share, up from $4.75.

The news put wind in Amgen's sails as the company moved closer to an Aug. 13 meeting with a Food and Drug Administration panel of experts for its osteoporosis drug candidate, denosumab. Analysts say the drug could bolster revenue growth.

Amgen also announced a denosumab sales partnership deal Monday with healthcare company GlaxoSmithKline to sell the drug in Europe, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand.

"We are optimistic about our financial performance in 2009 and are focused on making denosumab a success," Amgen Chief Executive Kevin Sharer said in a statement.

Under the deal with GlaxoSmithKline, Amgen will receive payments totaling $120 million and ongoing royalties.

Shares of Amgen jumped as much as 3.3%, to $62.80, in after-hours trading after falling 15 cents to close at $60.77.


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