Imbruvica Expected to Drive AbbVie’s Revenue Growth



Imbruvica demand trends

Solid demand from chronic lymphocytic leukemia (or CLL) patients has been a key factor driving AbbVie’s (ABBV) Imbruvica sales in 2016. The drug reported ~$1.8 billion in revenues in 2016, which represents year-over-year (or YoY) growth of ~67%.

AbbVie has also been researching Imbruvica to expand the drug’s label across other hematologic cancers, non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas, and other types of cancers. To learn more about ongoing research programs related to Imbruvica, please read New Indications May Be Big Opportunity for AbbVie’s Imbruvica.

If AbbVie can increase the number of approved indications for Imbruvica, it may have a positive impact on ABBV stock, as well as on the iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV). AbbVie makes up ~0.59% of IVV’s total portfolio holdings.

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Revenue growth

In 4Q16, Imbruvica’s sales reached ~$511 million, which represents year-over-year (or YoY) growth of ~49%. This performance was driven by robust growth in prescriptions. Based on data collected by IMS Health, Imbruvica witnessed YoY growth of ~38% in the total number of prescriptions in 4Q16. The drug also saw 6% growth in total prescriptions on a quarter-over-quarter basis.

In 4Q16, the drug earned $434 million in revenues from the US market, which represents ~47% YoY growth. AbbVie’s share of Imbruvica’s sales in international markets totaled $77 million.

Imbruvica is being developed and marketed jointly by AbbVie and Janssen Biotech. With Imbruvica, AbbVie plans to pose tough competition to other oncology players such as Celgene (CELG), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), and Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY).

New approvals

On January 19, 2017, Imbruvica was approved by the FDA as a therapy for relapsed/refractory marginal zone lymphoma. This is the fifth major disease indication and the seventh approval secured by Imbruvica from the FDA.

In the next article, we’ll discuss the financial guidance provided by AbbVie for 2017.


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