* Adj earnings 23 Canadian cts/shr vs 19 cts yr earlier
* Generics unit sales rise 14 percent
* Same-store sales up 2.6 percent
(Adds background on Shoppers, analysts' expectations.)
Oct 10 (Reuters) - Canadian pharmacy chain Jean Coutu Group Inc reported a rise in adjusted quarterly earnings on Wednesday, as its generic drug manufacturing subsidiary Pro Doc posted a double-digit gain in sales and operating income.
Prescription sales growth at Longueuil, Quebec-based Jean Coutu and rivals such as Shoppers Drug Mart Corp have been hurt in recent years by a provincial crackdown on generic drug prices and reimbursement rules. But Jean Coutu has said Pro Doc should help boost margins over the long term.
Pro Doc's sales rose 14.0 percent to C$38.3 million (US$39.2 million) for the second quarter ended Sept. 1, and its contribution to operating income before amortization rose 25.2 percent to C$15.4 million.
Shoppers' Sanis generics business has been held back by regulations in Ontario, its biggest market, that ban the sale of private label generics. Shoppers has been granted leave to challenge the ban before Canada's top court.
Excluding a gain related to Jean Coutu's stake in U.S. drugstore chain Rite Aid Corp and other items, earnings rose to C$50.0 million, or 23 Canadian cents a share, compared with C$44.6 million, or 19 Canadian cents, a year earlier.
On an unadjusted basis, net profit fell to C$51.2 million (US$52.3 million), or 23 Canadian cents a share, from C$66.4 million, or 29 Canadian cents.
Revenue rose to C$658.7 million from C$635.2 million. Sales at established stores, a key measure for retailers, increased 2.6 percent.
Analysts, on average, expected earnings of 22 Canadian cents a share on revenue of C$653.7 million.
($1 = $0.98 Canadian)
(Reporting by Allison Martell; Editing by Leslie Adler and Jeffrey Benkoe)
Keywords: JEANCOUTU RESULTS/