Amgen Outlook Is Bright, Analyst Predict Obesity-Focused Drug Potential Will Drive Shareholder Value

Zinger Key Points
  • Despite earlier uncertainties about MariTide since Phase 1 data release in 2022, the analyst sees its potential to stand out.
  • Amgen's other late-stage assets will diversify its product portfolio, offsetting anticipated declines from loss of exclusivities.

Amgen Inc AMGN reported first-quarter (Q1) earnings Thursday, touting adjusted EPS of $3.96, which beat the analyst consensus estimate of $3.87.

Here are highlights from the release and subsequent analyst call:

  • Sales increased 22% Y/Y to $7.45 billion, which beat the analyst consensus estimate of $7.436 billion.
  • Amgen sees full-year 2024 adjusted EPS of $19-$20.20 versus consensus of $19.48.
  • The company is pulling the plug on AMG 786, an oral Phase 1 candidate for obesity, and remain focused on prioritizing differentiated medicines.
  • Amgen CEO Robert Bradway said the company is “confident in MariTide’s differentiated profile and believe it will address important unmet medical needs.”

Also Read: Sandoz Settles Patent Dispute With Amgen Related To Bone Disorder Drug Denosumab.

Analyst Take: William Blair’s analysis suggests that despite earlier uncertainties about MariTide’s effectiveness and safety since Phase 1 data release in 2022, the analyst sees its potential to stand out among other therapies, especially concerning treatment frequency.

William Blair has revised its outlook on Amgen shares to Outperform based on growing confidence in MariTide’s potential efficacy and safety compared to other therapies. 

Amgen faces competition from Novo Nordisk A/S and Eli Lilly And Co. But MariTide has multi-blockbuster potential, with Amgen’s expertise likely to maximize its development, analysts say. 

The analyst writes, “It has grown more confident in the potential for the therapy to meaningfully differentiate from other therapies in development.”

Positive Phase 2 results, indicating a weight loss of over 20% with minimal adverse events and less frequent dosing, are expected to boost Amgen’s share prices. 

While MariTide is the focus, William Blair notes Amgen’s other late-stage assets will diversify its product portfolio. This will offset anticipated declines from loss of exclusivities, particularly Prolia/Xgeva, in the short term.

Read Next: Full Approval For Amgen’s Flagship Cancer Drug Lumakras Pushed For Around Four Years.

Price Action: AMGN shares are up 12.8% at $314.00 during the premarket session at last check Friday.

Image: Shutterstock

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