Bristol Myers says it needs another year to hit target for new drugs

By Michael Erman and Sriparna Roy

(Reuters) -Bristol Myers Squibb on Thursday pushed back by a year the time frame for its new-product portfolio to hit $10 billion in revenue as the sales ramp-up of medicines such as psoriasis treatment Sotyktu and multiple sclerosis drug Zeposia takes longer than initially projected.

Shares of the drugmaker were off nearly 4% at $54.49 in late morning trading.

The company said it now expects greater than $10 billion of new-product sales in 2026. It had previously forecast $10 billion to $13 billion for the portfolio in 2025.

“The long-term potential of these brands remains the same,” Bristol’s Chief Financial Officer David Elkins said in an interview, noting that the drugs are on pace to hit around $3.5 billion in sales this year.

Chief Operating Officer Christopher Boerner, who is set to become the company’s new CEO, said specific issues for each drug led to the forecast change, such as manufacturing snags and additional competition for cell therapy Abecma, which brought in sales of $93 million in the quarter, missing estimates of $106 million.

While sales of Sotyktu exceeded expectations – $66 million for the quarter versus analyst estimates of $43.50 million – the company said health insurance coverage challenges were slowing its launch.

Sales of $248 million for new anemia drug Reblozyl also missed expectations with analysts looking for $262.8 million.

Bristol Myers said it earned $4.1 billion, or $2 per share, in the third quarter, down from $4.3 billion, or $1.99 a share, a year earlier. Analysts, on average, had expected earnings per share of $1.76.

The company raised the low end of its full-year earnings forecast range by 15 cents and now expects $7.50 to $7.65 per share.

Boerner is expected take over as CEO next month, replacing Giovanni Caforio.

The Princeton, New Jersey-based company has been pressured by generic competition for its top drug, the blood cancer treatment Revlimid.

Bristol Myers is also expected to face revenue losses for two of its other top sellers, cancer immunotherapy Opdivo and blood thinner Eliquis, as they lose patent protection later this decade.

Earlier in October, the company agreed to buy cancer drugmaker Mirati Therapeutics for up to $5.8 billion, in an attempt to diversify its oncology business.

(Reporting by Michael Erman and Sriparna Roy; Editing by Leslie Adler and Bill Berkrot)