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What Are the Key Growth Catalysts for AbbVie in 2019?

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Feb. 22 2019, Updated 10:30 a.m. ET

Revenue and EPS growth trajectory

On its fourth-quarter earnings conference call, AbbVie (ABBV) reported net revenue of $32.73 billion for 2018, a YoY (year-over-year) rise of 15.2% on an operational basis. The company also reported non-GAAP (generally accepted accounting principles) diluted EPS of $7.91 in 2018, a YoY rise of 41.3%.

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Growth catalysts

AbbVie plans to launch investigational immunology drugs risankizumab in psoriasis indications and upadacitinib in rheumatoid arthritis indications in 2019.

According to the company’s fourth-quarter earnings conference call, based on robust results from Phase 3 trials, risankizumab is expected to be an attractive treatment option for those moderate to severe psoriasis patients who are new to biologic therapies as well as for those who are not responding adequately to TNF-based therapies. AbbVie expects to receive FDA approval for risankizumab in the second quarter of 2019.

Based on favorable data from six pivotal studies, which together involved around 5,000 participants, AbbVie expects FDA approval for upadacitinib in rheumatoid arthritis indications in the second quarter of 2019. According to the company’s fourth-quarter earnings conference call, it has tested upadacitinib across multiple patient types as well as in comparison with two biologic therapies and standard of care regimens.

According to the company’s fourth-quarter earnings conference call, in 2019, AbbVie expects Orilissa, which is approved for treating pain associated with endometriosis, to report revenue of $200 million. The company expects to see a rapid uptake of Orilissa in 2019 due to a recent increase in formulary coverage to 70%.

According to the company’s fourth-quarter earnings conference call, in 2019, it’s awaiting results from its Phase 3 studies evaluating hematology-oncology asset Venclexta in relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma, frontline chronic lymphocytic leukemia, and acute myeloid leukemia indications. Additionally, the company is awaiting data from its Phase 3 study evaluating investigational therapy Depatux-M in a glioblastoma multiforme indication.

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