Pfizer expects patent losses to hurt bottom line

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Patent expirations on over a half-dozen of its best selling drugs has Pfizer bracing itself for substantial pressure on its earnings in the years 2005-2007, the company said in a presentation to financial analysts this week.
Pfizer said drugs that it markets that face patent expirations represent $14 billion in sales, approximately one-fourth of the company's annual revenue. The company outlined its pipeline during a presentation held Tuesday at company research facilities in Groton, Conn.
Although the company did not make a forecast for 2005, Pfizer said its financial results next year will be hurt by generic competition for its anti-fungal indication Diflucan, epilepsy drug Neurontin, antibiotic Zithromax and hypertension drug Accupril.
The company also is preparing for the loss of U.S. marketing exclusivity on the allergy drug Zyrtec and anti-depressant Zoloft in 2006 and hypertension drug Norvasc in 2007.
"From a revenue standpoint, they're not going to make up for those lost revenues in the next three years," Deutsche Bank analyst Barbara Ryan told Reuters.
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