Allergan Earnings Call Insights: Restatis Guidance and Acquisitions Outlook

Allergan, Inc. (NYSE:AGN) recently reported its second quarter earnings and discussed the following topics in its earnings conference call.

Restatis Guidance

Larry Biegelsen – Wells Fargo Securities: Maybe the first – my question is on Restasis and maybe the generic guidance. Maybe you could talk a little bit about when we’ll see your response to the FDA draft guidance, and maybe if you could give us a little bit of color as to why you believe the in-vitro pathway is inappropriate?

David E.I. Pyott – Chairman and CEO: I’ll take that one, Larry. I think it’s obvious to all that we have put to work the best minds in terms of internal resources from clinical, regulatory, legal, and we’ve also hired some of the best external experts with experience in these matters. I think you’ll appreciate that we are working through all of our strategies, all of our arguments, and that these will become public right around the deadline which is due, which is of course, I think everybody knows, August 19. So I think that will be the next time where you can really take a very close look at the approach we are embarking upon.

Acquisitions Outlook

Annabel Samimy – Stifel Nicolaus: Just curious, given the solid recent developments with the pipeline and potential lowering of the generic hurdle to RESTASIS, can you tell us how in the near and medium-term, you’re prioritizing some of the various options to drive shareholder value, whether it’s BD, M&A or use of capital for share buyback or dividends? Also with regard to M&A, historically you’ve done some small or strategic acquisitions, given the recent activity, are you – do you any compulsion to go to start thinking bigger?

David E.I. Pyott – Chairman and CEO: Right, that one sounds like for me again. So I think really top of the heap there is delivering very solid operating performance. On many occasions, I talked about our midterm growth aspirations being roundabout 10% sales growth in local currencies; and then around mid-teens in terms of earnings per share. So I think when you reflect upon what we’ve done in Q2, you think about the outlook for the rest of the year, I think we’re well on our way to delivering that. I think also, it’s very important to remember the huge number of approvals that we’ve received since 2010; and we still have several more to come, this year, beginning of next year. So then moving on to the subject of M&A, we constantly look for external assets whether there’d be technology assets to add to our pipeline. Also as a quick reminder, I have explained on several occasions that in the coming five or so years, there will be a major step up in R&D from roughly $1 billion plus this year to roughly $1.5 billion some five years from now. So, you can see we have resources available to bring in more technology, and of course, in addition, we’re always looking at companies for marketed products. So, despite, I think, many observers believing that something materially has changed, really not that much has changed. We’re going about our business to deliver strong results, and then afterwards it’s up to those who’re investing capital to decide whether Allergan at this current price is a good investment. I can only show you the numbers. The investment community clearly has to come to their investment choices and trade-offs.

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