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State and Nation Business

Akorn 1Q profit soars but 2013 forecast falls

LAKE FOREST – Akorn Inc.'s first quarter earnings soared, as the generic drugmaker recorded revenue gains from new and established products and its India business.

But the results missed Wall Street expectations and the Lake Forest company lowered its forecast for 2013 earnings and revenue in part to account for slower-than-expected sales from products launched late last year.

Its shares fell more than 12 percent in morning trading Tuesday after the earnings report.

Akorn earned $10.8 million, or 10 cents per share, in the three months that ended March 31, up from$3.1 million, or 3 cents per share, in last year's quarter.

Adjusted earnings totaled 13 cents per share in the latest quarter, a penny below the 14 cents expected on average by analysts surveyed by FactSet,

Revenue climbed 43 percent to $73.8 million from $51.7 million. Analysts expected $74.1 million in revenue.

The company said it benefited in the first three months of the year from a full quarter of sales from its Akorn India business. Akorn also recorded only $519,000 in acquisition-related costs in this year's quarter, compared to $8.5 million last year.

Akorn now expects 2013 adjusted earnings to range between 53 cents and 55 cents per share on $305 million to $315 million in revenue. That's down from a forecast the company made in January that called for earnings of 57 cents to 61 cents per share on $325 million to $335 million in revenue.

Akorn said it also updated the forecast to account for a slower-than-expected recovery of sales of products affected by the shutdown of a New Jersey factory due to Superstorm Sandy, which swept up the East Coast last fall.

Analysts expect, on average, 2013 earnings of 61 cents per share on $333.7 million in revenue.

Akron shares fell $1.89, or 12.5 percent, to $13.26 in trading Tuesday morning, erasing the stock's gain so far this year after closing 2012 at $13.36. The company's shares have ranged between $11.19 and $16.87 over the past year.

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