AstraZeneca’s (AZN) Zoladex generated total sales of $184.0 million in the first quarter, which was a decline of 1.0%. Its sales in emerging markets increased by 16.0% to $101.0 million, and its Europe sales increased by 6.0% to $34.0 million.
In the rest of the world (or ROW) region, sales of Zoladex declined 17.0% to $48.0 million. This decrease was attributable to heightened competition. In March 2017, AstraZeneca entered into an agreement with TerSera for the sale of commercial rights to Zoladex in the United States and Canada.
AstraZeneca’s cardiovascular, renal, and metabolism (or CVRM) sales include Crestor and other legacy medicines, which generated total sales of ~$1.6 billion in the first quarter for a decline of 8.0%.
New CVRM sales increased 13.0% to $900.0 million, aided by strong results from Brilinta and Farxiga, both of which became blockbuster drugs in fiscal 2017. A drug attains blockbuster status after it grosses sales of $1.0 billion in a year.
Sales of Brilinta increased 31.0% to $293.0 million in the first quarter. Its emerging market sales, which increased 27.0% to $76.0 million, showed a continued outperformance of branded oral anti-platelet medicines.
Driven by an increase in the average duration of therapy and strong growth in the number of patients sent home from the hospital with Brilinta, the US sales of the drug rose 32.0% to $115.0 million in the first quarter. Brilinta achieved a record total-prescription market share at the end of the first quarter, and the days of therapy volume market share data were promising.
The drug showed indication leadership across a number of markets, bolstered by the inclusion within HR PMI guidelines by the European Society of Cardiology in 2017. Its Europe sales increased 32.0% to $86.0 million in the first quarter.
In the next part of this series, we’ll take a look at the performance of other key CRVM products and the respiratory category.