Thursday, October 29, 2009

Coutu Plans Doubling Generic Drug Sales, CEO Says

From Bloomberg:
Jean Coutu Group Inc., Canada’s second-largest pharmacy chain, plans to at least double generic drug sales in the next five years as the company attracts new customers and patents expire on widely prescribed medicines, Chief Executive Officer Francois J. Coutu said.

“For us, it’s clear that generics are an area that will grow quickly,” Coutu said in an Oct. 27 interview at company headquarters in the Montreal suburb of Longueuil. It depends on the speed with which patented drug formulations become available for copying, often as cheaper versions, “but we think doubling or even tripling revenue in the next few years is a realistic target,” he said.

Jean Coutu, which has 364 franchised stores in Quebec, Ontario and New Brunswick, expanded into the generics business in 2007, when it acquired closely held Canadian manufacturer Pro-Doc Ltd. for an undisclosed amount. Pro-Doc had revenue of C$22.7 million ($22.1 million) in its fiscal second quarter, a fourfold increase from the same period a year earlier. Jean Coutu’s revenue for the quarter totaled C$608.7 million. ...more

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