Lilly’s Mounjaro Beats Q3 Expectations, But Company Cuts Full-Year Profit Guidance

Eli Lilly San Diego/iStock, JHVE Photo

Pictured: Eli Lilly building in San Diego/iStock, JHVE Photo

Eli Lilly reported strong third-quarter financial results on Thursday, beating Wall Street expectations with $9.5 billion in revenue—a 37% increase—but cut its profit outlook for 2023. 

Lilly credited Mounjaro, its type 2 diabetes treatment, Verzenio and Jardiance volume growth as major drivers, as well as the $1.42 billion sale of rights for its olanzapine portfolio. However, sales of Trulicity— its once-weekly injection for diabetes and top selling drug—dropped 10% compared to the same quarter last year. 

Mounjaro is Lilly’s hot ticket item as GLP-1 agonists have taken on the obesity market by storm. The injectable drug brought in $1.4 billion in the third quarter, well above the $1.2 billion consensus estimate from analysts. Currently approved for diabetes and used off-label for weight loss, Lilly awaits FDA approval to market it for obesity to keep up with its main competition, Novo Nordisk’s Wegovy.  

In Thursday’s earnings announcement, the company flagged “intermittent delays” in Mounjaro due to significant demand. Novo Nordisk also reported struggling to keep up with demand for Wegovy, which posted more than 730% sales growth in the third quarter.  

Despite its growth in revenue, Lilly adjusted its earnings per share (non-GAAP) from the prior forecast of $9.70 to $9.90 down to between $6.50 and $6.70 per share. The company pointed to the charges of recent acquisitions as the cause for the drop, expecting to record In-Process Research and Development (IPR&D) expenses of $2.98 billion. 

However, revenue guidance for the year of $33.4 billion to $33.9 billion remains unchanged.   

Lilly reported the FDA decision for its Alzheimer’s disease drug is now anticipated in the first quarter of 2024, pushed back from previous expectations for end of this year. No details were provided regarding the delay. 

The biopharma celebrated approvals for Omvoh, an ulcerative colitis treatment, and an additional indication added for Jardiance for the treatment of chronic kidney disease. 

Lilly kept busy bolstering its pipeline through small deals. The third quarter also saw acquisitions completed for DICE Therapeutics, Versanis Bio, Emergence Therapeutics and Sigilon Therapeutics.  

Kate Goodwin is a freelance life science writer based in Des Moines, Iowa. She can be reached at kate.goodwin@biospace.com and on LinkedIn.   

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