AbbVie’s Imbruvica Saw Solid Demand in 1Q17



Imbruvica growth trends

With 21% of newly diagnosed chronic lymphocytic leukemia (or CLL) patients opting for AbbVie’s (ABBV) Imbruvica, the drug attained a leading position in the frontline segment in 1Q17. The duration of therapy with Imbruvica is much longer than alternative regimens for CLL. 

Further, CLL patients who continued with Imbruvica for longer periods of time have benefited in terms of progression-free survival (or PFS) and overall survival (or OS). So, 30% of the total treated frontline CLL patients have also switched to Imbruvica therapy.

Longer duration of therapy with Imbruvica also helped boost AbbVie’s revenues in 1Q17. If this trend continues, it may have a favorable impact on the company’s stock price of the company, as well as that of the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY). AbbVie makes up about 0.51% of SPY’s total portfolio holdings.

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Revenue performance

In 1Q17, Imbruvica reported global revenues of around $551 million, which equals year-over-year (or YoY) growth of ~45%. This performance was mainly driven by the strong uptake of the drug in the first-line CLL segment as well as steady penetration in other approved indications. 

The company is confident of reaching Imbruvica’s global revenue target of ~$2.4 billion in 2017. AbbVie has also projected Imbruvica’s total sales to grow ~35% YoY in 2Q17.

Imbruvica earned ~$457 million in revenues in the US market, 40.7% higher on a YoY basis. AbbVie has projected Imbruvica’s fiscal 2017 revenues from the US market to be around $2.0 billion.

Imbruvica has enabled AbbVie to pose solid competition to other CLL players such as Pfizer (PFE), Sanofi (SNY), and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ).

In the next article, we’ll analyze the label expansion strategy for Imbruvica in greater detail.


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