Bristol-Myers Squibb's (NYSE: BMY) end of year earnings report is coming up this Friday after the market opens. The company is going through a transformative phase, so we can expect the release and subsequent conference call to generate a great deal of noise. It's easy to get caught up in the ebb and flow created by analysts, but I think it's best to highlight some items to look out for so we can determine for ourselves whether the company is on the right path, or stumbling in the dark.
Eliquis' launch The launch of Eliquis, marketed in partnership with Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) has been a disappointment so far. A slow US launch had to be expected, as it followed Boehringer Ingelheim's Pradaxa, and Xarelto from Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) into the market. The analyst community was convinced that Eliquis' superior safety profile with respect to dangerous bleeding episodes would propel it past its competition. During the first nine months of 2013, sales of Eliquis in the US only reached $49 million, while Xarelto reached $246 million during Q3 2013 alone.
Bristol-Myers has stepped up its game, by sending physicians into the field to educate other physicians of Eliquis' safety profile. A supplemental new drug application that would extend the anticoagulant to treatment of hip or knee replacement patients post-surgery is also under review. Be sure to keep your eyes and ears open for any signs of improvement from what should already be a drug heading for blockbuster status.
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