×

UPDATE 2-Regeneron profit beats estimates on strong sales of key drugs

* Q4 adj EPS, sales beat market expectations

Eylea, Dupixent sales top estimates-Guggenheim

* Results hold few surprises, analyst says

* Shares up 4 pct in premarket trading (Adds details on drug sales, background on market, analyst comment, shares)

By Anuron Kumar Mitra and Tamara Mathias

Feb 8 (Reuters) - U.S. drugmaker Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc's quarterly profit and revenue beat estimates, helped by strong demand for its new eczema drug Dupixent and its flagship eye treatment Eylea.

Dupixent, touted as a potential blockbuster, is seen as key to Regeneron's future and is core to its strategy of investing in medicines that have the potential to treat more than one disease.

The drug, which won U.S. approval last March, raked in fourth-quarter sales of about $139 million, topping consensus estimates of $122 million, according to brokerage Guggenheim.

Eylea's sales increased nearly 14 percent to $975 million in the United States, also beating the consensus estimates of $960 million, according to Guggenheim.

Regeneron shares were up nearly 4 percent at $347.40 in premarket trading on Thursday.

The results held few surprises, but allows investors to "base up their expectations from here", Guggenheim analyst Adnan Butt said.

Regeneron is pushing to expand the use of Dupixent as rivals Eli Lilly & Co, Incyte Corp, Pfizer Inc and AbbVie Inc take strides to storm the eczema market.

Regeneron has partnered with French drugmaker Sanofi SA to develop and commercialize Dupixent as well as its cholesterol drug Praluent.

Praluent raked in global sales of $63 million in the quarter, $10 million ahead of consensus estimates, Guggenheim said.

That drug has been struggling to obtain reimbursement from insurers in the United States and is facing pressure from Amgen Inc's Repatha.

Regeneron's total revenue rose nearly 30 percent to $1.58 billion in the quarter ended Dec. 31.

A $381 million charge related to changes in U.S. tax laws led to the company's net profit falling 31 percent to $173.5 million, or $1.50 per share.

Excluding items, the company earned $5.23 per share

Analysts on average were expecting earnings of $4.53 per share on revenue of $1.51 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. (Reporting by Anuron Kumar Mitra and Tamara Mathias; Editing by Savio D'Souza)