Novartis achieves double-digit growth rates in sales and profit in the first quarter of 2024

Outlook raised for the 2024 financial year

Novartis CEO Vas Narasimhan

In the first quarter of 2024, Novartis increased sales by ten percent from 10.8 billion dollars in the previous year to around 11.8 billion dollars. At constant exchange rates, growth even amounted to eleven per cent. Volume increases of 14 percentage points had a positive impact on sales development. Competition from generics had a negative impact of two percentage points, while the price trend had a negative impact of one percentage point.

The sales growth is based on strong sales of medicines for the treatment of heart failure, psoriasis, multiple sclerosis, breast cancer and prostate cancer. In September 2023, the Swiss pharmaceutical company spun off the Sandoz business as an independent company and now reports its results in "continuing operations". These comprise the retained business activities of Novartis, consisting of the innovative medicines business and the continuing Group activities.

Novartis increases net income by 25 percent

Operating profit rose by 29 per cent to 3.4 billion dollars compared to the same quarter last year. This is mainly due to higher net sales. Net profit totalled 2.7 billion dollars. This corresponds to an increase of a quarter compared to the same period last year. Commenting on the quarterly results, Vas Narasimhan, CEO of Novartis, said: "Novartis continued our strong momentum with both sales growth and core margin expansion in Q1. Our performance was broad-based, across all key growth brands and geographies, allowing us to raise guidance for the full year 2024. We continued to advance our pipeline in first quarter." He adds: "The momentum in our business and pipeline gives us continued confidence in our mid- and long-term growth outlook."

Outlook: Pharmaceutical group raises forecast for 2024

Barring unforeseen events and assuming constant exchange rates, the Basel-based pharmaceutical company expects sales growth in the high single-digit to low double-digit percentage range compared to the previous year. The company had previously assumed growth in the mid single-digit percentage range.