RocheGroup sales grew 9% in local currencies (6% in Swiss francs; 15% in US dollars) to 12.2 billion Swiss francs. The Pharmaceuticals Division's sales increased 10% in local currencies (6% in Swiss francs; 15% in US dollars) to 9.7 billion Swiss francs, maintaining its above-market growth. The Diagnostics Division also maintained its above-market growth, with sales increasing 9% in local currencies (7% in Swiss francs; 16% in US dollars) to 2.5 billion Swiss francs.

At its Investor Day in March, Roche provided an in-depth review of its near- and long-term growth opportunities. Roche plans to introduce at least six new medicines by the end 2014. Of the 61 new molecular entities (NMEs) in the Group's R&D pipeline, ten are currently in late-stage development, and Roche plans to increase this to as many as 13 NMEs by year end. The Group's late-stage pipeline also comprises more than 35 new indications for existing products. Roche is set to strengthen its global leadership position in oncology and to expand in therapeutic areas such as metabolism, inflammation and diseases of the central nervous system.

Pharmaceuticals Division posts double-digit growth in first quarter

  • Pharma sales grow 10% (6% in Swiss francs, 15% in US dollars)
  • Continued strong growth of oncology portfolio, increasing 12% in local currencies; sales of leading cancer medication Avastin advance 18%.
  • Promising US launch of Actemra for rheumatoid arthritis
  • Rituxan approved in US for chronic lymphocytic leukemia, the most common form of adult leukemia
  • US marketing application for T–DM1 for advanced HER2-positive breast cancer to be brought forward to 2010, based on strong phase II results

Diagnostics Division continues to significantly outperform the market

  • Divisional sales grow 9% (7% in Swiss francs, 16% in US dollars), again substantially ahead of the global market, driven by Professional Diagnostics, Diabetes Care and Applied Science
  • Continued strong uptake of recently launched products in Diabetes Care (Accu-Chek Mobile, Accu-Chek Combo) as well as other business areas (cobas 8000, cobas 4800 and xCELLigence systems)

Commenting on the Group's first-quarter sales figures, Roche CEO Severin Schwan said: "With sales advancing 9%, Roche is off to a very good start in 2010. Both divisions continued to outgrow their respective markets. We are thus fully on track for 2010." Referring to Roche's strong late-stage pipeline, Schwan added: "I am very pleased that, after discussions with the FDA, we are now planning to submit a US marketing application for our innovative breast cancer treatment T-DM1 this year, based on strong phase II data in women who have not responded to prior treatments."

About Roche
Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is a leader in research-focused healthcare with combined strengths in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. Roche is the world's largest biotech company with truly differentiated medicines in oncology, virology, inflammation, metabolism and CNS. Roche is also the world leader in in-vitro diagnostics, tissue-based cancer diagnostics and a pioneer in diabetes management. Roche's personalised healthcare strategy aims at providing medicines and diagnostic tools that enable tangible improvements in the health, quality of life and survival of patients. In 2009, Roche had over 80,000 employees worldwide and invested almost 10 billion Swiss francs in R&D. The Group posted sales of 49.1 billion Swiss francs. Genentech, United States, is a wholly owned member of the Roche Group. Roche has a majority stake in Chugai Pharmaceutical, Japan. For more information: