Drugmaker AstraZeneca said Thursday that its first quarter profits fell 31 percent, as measured by earnings per share, from the same period in 2012 and it attributed much of the decline to lower revenue from drugs that face generic competition after losing patent exclusivity.
"As anticipated, the first quarter performance reflects the loss of exclusivity for several large products," AstraZeneca chief executive officer Pascal Soriot said in a statement. "We remain focused on our strategic priorities of returning to growth and achieving scientific leadership. Brilinta, the diabetes franchise, emerging markets, Japan and our respiratory products have all made good progress and we continued to invest in distinctive science that will advance our knowledge of disease physiology and help to identify new drug targets."
AstraZeneca is based in London, but has operations in Wilmington and Newark, Del.
The company said in March that it was cutting or moving about 1200 jobs from Wilmington, most related to a reorganization of research and development operations. Some of the people keeping jobs will have to move to Gaithersburg, Md. The company headquarters will also move from London to Cambridge in hopes of being closer to scientific researchers.