Roche bolstered its case for expansion Thursday with the release of sales numbers for the first nine months of the year. Overall sales neared $39 billion, a 4% increase compared to the same period last year. Pharmaceuticals contributed $30 billion. US pharmaceutical sales were up 12% compared to the same period last year, adding close to $13 billion to total pharmaceutical sales, followed by the EU which kicked in around $7.7 billion. Diagnostics sales rose 3%, to $8.5 billion.
Despite tight competition, the company’s wet AMD/diabetic macular edema/retinal vein occlusion treatment Lucentis wrangled $1.4 billion in sales, a 13% increase, compared to the same period last year.
Market newcomer Kadcyla pulled in $173 million in sales since hitting the US market in February and Switzerland in May, while Perjeta added $206 million to the sales total. Hot spots included breast cancer treatments Avastin, with a 13% bump in overall sales compared to the same period the year before and Herceptin, which saw total sales rise 6%, and US sales jump 11%.
The company has logged several recent wins in breast cancer, including the February introduction of Kadcyla, and the FDA’s September approval of Perjeta as a first-line, pre-operative treatment for breast cancer. The Perjeta decision was the first FDA-approved drug in a neoadjuvant treatment of breast cancer.
Roche announced Monday that it was throwing more money behind its push for biologics and committed to hiring 500 new employees and spending $800 million across four sites in the next five years.