GSK’s India unit posts Q2 profit rise on strong vaccine demand

BENGALURU (Reuters) – GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals reported a 12.5% rise in quarterly profit on Thursday as the Indian unit of UK’s GSK plc saw strong demand for its vaccines and general medicine.

Consolidated profit for the quarter ended September 30 rose to 2.18 billion rupees ($26.18 million) from 1.93 billion rupees a year earlier.

Sales of general medicine grew 5% during the quarter, while those of vaccines rose 10% led by demand for its shingles vaccine, Shingrix, the company said in a statement.

Revenue from operations rose 4.4% to 9.57 billion rupees. Cost of materials consumed fell 31.2% during the quarter.

“We held leadership position for our key brands in relevant therapy areas such as anti-infectives and dermatology,” said Bhushan Akshikar, managing director of GSK India.

GSK raised its full-year profit and sales guidance for the second time after its third-quarter earnings beat expectations earlier this month. The raise in forecast is following the strong launch of its respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine in the United States

Shares in GSK India closed up 0.3% ahead of results on Thursday, where the Nifty Pharma index closed down 0.03% today. ($1 = 83.2810 Indian rupees)

(This story has been corrected to fix Bhushan Akshikar’s name in paragraph 5)

(Reporting by Ashna Teresa Britto in Bengaluru; Editing by Nivedita Bhattacharjee)