The operating income developed equally well over the previous year. Currency effects played their part here, too, adding to the positive development of the individual businesses.
In the first six months, net sales of Boehringer Ingelheim again outpaced the growth on the world pharma market.
Prof. Dr Dr Andreas Barner, Chairman of the Board of Managing Directors: "We have posted growth in our business areas Human Pharmaceuticals, thanks in particular to the success of our innovative prescription medicines, and in Animal Health, thanks to the growth in the segment of vaccines. Despite the negative impact in some areas as a result of the financial crisis, local business development in the first half of 2009 shows that Boehringer Ingelheim is maintaining its growth course, virtually unchanged, and continues to outpace the pharmaceutical market," said Andreas Barner.
Boehringer Ingelheim is again expecting sales growth in local currency in the year as a whole to outpace the world pharma market; for the tenth time in succession. Growth in euro depends greatly on the exchange rate trends of the US dollar and the Japanese yen.
Due to important patent expiries, for instance for the drug Flomax® in the USA, Boehringer Ingelheim in 2010 is likely to see virtually no significant growth after ten years. Yet already in 2011 a new period of growth will be heralded from new innovative medications, which already will be introduced in 2010. These launches will trigger additional investments in 2010.
In the first six months of 2009, net sales in our core Prescription Medicines business rose to EUR 5,107 million, signifying growth of +9.1 percent in local currency (+17.3 percent in euro).
International key brands accounted for 79 percent of net sales in the Prescription Medicines business with local growth of +13.3 percent over the previous year. With sales of EUR 1,176 million, Spiriva®, for the treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), secured further strong growth of +15.0 percent in the first half of 2009 compared with the previous year. The leading cardiovascular product Micardis®, for the treatment of high blood pressure, achieved a marked increase in sales of +7.6 percent over the previous year to total EUR 709 million. In the field of urological disorders, the company markets Flomax®/Alna® for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia. This product achieved growth of +27.2 percent over the previous year with net sales of EUR 709 million.
In the first six months of 2009, the Consumer Health Care business (CHC) posted net sales in the amount of EUR 609 million and local growth of +1.0 percent (+7.1 percent in euro) over the previous year. The operating income in this segment suffered considerably in the last six months in the wake of the financial crisis.
The international CHC key brands, including Dulcolax®, Mucosolvan® and Buscopan®, nevertheless posted growth of +6.9 percent in local currency.
Business with Industrial Customer secured sales of EUR 382 million in the first six months of 2009, more or less on a par with the previous year (local decline of -2.3 percent, +0.3 percent growth in euro).
The Animal Health business achieved strong growth of +27.9 percent in local currency (+32.5 percent in euro), with sales of EUR 286 million. The most significant growth driver was again the innovative pig vaccine Ingelvac Circoflex®.
The results from the company's own research and development are also extremely encouraging and offer a solid basis for the future growth of Boehringer Ingelheim:
While Pradaxa® (dabigatran etexilate) for the "primary prevention of venous thrombotic events following elective hip or knee replacement surgery" has developed very well in Europe and some other non-European countries, the company now awaits the results of RE-LY® and RE-COVER®. These two large-scale studies in the new indications "stroke prevention associated with atrial fibrillation" and "treatment of acute venous thrombosis" are currently being evaluated; the results are to be published end of August and in November, 2009.
The results of RE-LY®, the largest study worldwide in stroke prevention associated with atrial fibrillation, are of particular importance as they herald the start of a new era in anticoagulant therapy after more than 50 years with no major progress. A medical breakthrough in stroke prevention associated with atrial fibrillation would be a convincing alternative to the complicated therapy with vitamin K antagonists currently available.
The substance flibanserin is currently investigated as a potential pharmaceutical treatment for pre-menopausal women suffering from Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder (HSDD).
The late stage clinical trial programme BOUQUET® for the investigation of efficacy and safety of flibanserin, includes 5,000 HSDD sufferers at over 300 clinical study sites across North America and Europe. Results of the pivotal phase III studies are expected to be released in late 2009.
In oncology, the phase III studies with BIBW 2992 (designated tradename Tovok®), a tumour growth factor inhibitor, and the innovative triple angiokinase inhibitor BIBF 1120 (designated tradename Vargatef®) in the indication "non-small-cell lung cancer" are on track. BIBF 1120 (Vargatef®) is also being tested as first-line therapy for ovarian cancer. A phase III study with 1,200 patients is being prepared in addition to the scheduled studies in prostate and intestinal cancer.
The phase III clinical study with the oral diabetes drug linagliptine is nearing completion. More than 4,000 patients were enrolled for the study and the first pivotal study has been unblinded for analysis. Following positive results from short-term phase IIb studies with another substance, an SGLT-2-inhibitor for the treatment of type-2 diabetes, recruitment for the 12-week studies with mono- and combination therapy is already well advanced.