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Eli Lilly CEO Sees Strong Sales for Schizophrenia Drug Zyprexa

John Lechleiter president and chief operating officer of Eli Lilly, told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” that sales of Zyprexa, a drug used to treat schizophrenia, are strong.

“We continue to be very bullish about Zyprexa,” Lechleiter said Monday. “We saw 6% sales growth in the U.S. this quarter. We had 14% sales growth internationally.”

For the first three months of the year, Lilly said it earned $913.3 million, or 84 cents a share, excluding charges related to its acquisition of Icos, up from $835 million, or 77 cents per share in the year-ago period. Sales rose 14% from the same quarter a year ago to $4.23 billion. Sales of Zyprexa gained 10% to $1.1 billion and sales of anti-depression drug Cymbalta jumped 89% to $441 million.

“We like where we are in this business,” Lechleiter said. “We’ve got a good strong balance sheet, a strengthening cash position. We invest more in research and development as a percent of sales than any of the major pharmaceutical companies and, of course, made it clear that we’ll also make acquisitions.”