Swiss drugmaker Novartis reported second-quarter core net income that fell short of expectations on Tuesday, on the back of a stronger dollar. But the company's chief executive told CNBC that it could ride out the currency's strength.
The strength of the dollar, in which Novartis posts results, might have hit profits, but the group can look forward to accelerating underlying growth as it rolls out a new heart failure drug, Entresto, which is forecast to be a multibillion-dollar seller.
Joe Jimenez, chief executive of Novartis, told CNBC Tuesday that the results looked much better after stripping out the effects of a stronger dollar.
"If you look at our results you have to look at them on a constant currency basis and they were very good in the second quarter," he said.
Novartis said quarterly net sales from continuing operations fell 5 percent to $12.694 billion, while rising 6 percent in constant currencies. Core net income of $3.1 billion was down 8 percent in dollar terms and up 5 percent at constant currencies.
Analysts in a Reuters poll had forecast total group net sales of $12.8 billion and group core net income of $3.2 billion.
The company maintained its financial outlook for this year, and Jimenez said the company was addressing its cost base around the world.
He added that Novartis would get a boost following the launch of Entresto and Cosentyx, which is used to treat psoriasis, which he said would be multi-billion dollar drugs.
"If you think about the two new launches that we recently received approval for, these are two new both potential mega-blockbusters," Jimenez said.
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