NEW YORK – Bristol Myers Squibb reported before markets opened on Wednesday a 16 percent increase in second quarter revenues as its finances continue to recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
BMS reported $11.7 billion in revenues for the three months ending June 30, compared to $10.13 billion in Q2 2020. The company beat analysts' consensus revenue estimate of $11.33 billion for Q2.
The drugmaker did not breakout total revenues from its oncology unit. However, the company highlighted that its PD-1 inhibitor nivolumab (Opdivo) returned to growth this quarter. Revenues from the checkpoint inhibitor came in at $1.91 billion in Q2 2021, a 16 percent increase from $1.65 billion in Q2 2020.
In the US, nivolumab sales increased by 13 percent to $1.1 billion, driven by recent launches in lung, renal, and upper gastrointestinal cancer indications, while international sales were driven by the new launches in lung and renal cancer, BMS CFO David Elkins said in the earnings call.
The company's other checkpoint inhibitor ipilimumab (Yervoy) contributed $510 million in sales in Q2 2021, a 38 percent increase compared to $369 million in the prior-year quarter.
"We have seen a recovery in the [immuno-oncology] market coming out of Q1 and into Q2," Elkins said. "New patient claims, while they still lag pre-COVID levels, have certainly improved quarter-over-quarter in [immuno-oncology]."
While demand for immunotherapy drugs grew 5 percent since Q1 2021, "oncology still lags other therapeutic areas," he added. "Increasingly our field teams are able to engage live with our customers and that's going to be really important given the competitive nature of a number of these markets like first-line lung cancer."
BMS' CAR T-cell therapies idecabtagene vicleucel (Abecma) and lisocabtagene maraleucel (Breyanzi) were both approved in the US in 2021. Ide-cel was approved in February for the treatment of relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma and liso-cel was approved for patients with relapsed or refractory large B-cell lymphoma in March. In the second quarter, ide-cel saw sales of $24 million and liso-cel reported sales of $17 million.
The company noted that both drug launches have had a strong start, and it continues to add sites to administer these cell therapies, with 65 sites currently available to administer liso-cel. BMS is also focusing on increasing its supply of both cell therapies to meet demand.
"We were able to leverage the site footprint of Breyanzi to accelerate site onboarding [of Abecma], an advantage of launching two CAR T medicines simultaneously," Elkins said. "Based on the significant unmet demand and differentiated profile, we have seen robust demand for this product beyond our current capacity and we are working hard to increase capacity over time."
In the second quarter, BMS achieved several international regulatory milestones. Regulators in Europe and in the UK recommended the nivolumab-ipilimumab combination to treat mismatch repair deficient or microsatellite instability-high metastatic colorectal cancer. European regulators also recommended approval for ide-cel for heavily pretreated relapsed and refractory multiple myeloma patients in June.
BMS licensed two oncology drugs in Q2. The company entered into a collaboration worth up to $3.1 billion to codevelop and commercialize Eisai's anti-folate receptor alpha antibody, MORAb-202. BMS also licensed Agenus' anti-TIGIT bispecific antibody, AGEN1777, in a deal worth up to $1.56 billion.
In Q2, BMS spent $3.27 billion on R&D, a 30 percent increase from $2.52 billion in Q2 2020. The company's marketing, selling, and administrative expenses were $1.88 billion during the quarter, a 16 percent increase over $1.63 billion in the year-ago quarter.
The New York-based company's net income in Q2 was $1.06 billion, or $.47 per share, compared to a net loss of $80 million, or $.04 per share, in Q2 2020. BMS reported an EPS of $1.93 on a non-GAAP basis, beating the average Wall Street estimate of $1.91.
As of June 30, BMS had $11.02 billion in cash and cash equivalents and $1.95 billion in marketable debt securities.