AZN » Topics » Investments

This excerpt taken from the AZN 6-K filed Mar 6, 2007.
Investments
Fixed asset investments, including investments in subsidiaries, are stated at cost and reviewed for impairment if there are indications that the carrying value may not be recoverable.

This excerpt taken from the AZN 6-K filed Feb 6, 2007.

Investments

During December, two agreements were signed: a deal with Cubist Pharmaceuticals Inc. to develop and commercialise all intravenous forms of Daptomycin, an anti-infective for the Asia Pacific market, with an upfront payment of $10 million which was capitalised as an intangible asset. Secondly, a three-year research collaboration and licensing agreement with Argenta Discovery Limited to identify improved bronchodilators to treat chronic pulminary disease with an initial payment of $21 million which was accrued and capitalised as an intangible asset.

In addition, the Company accrued a further milestone payment of $20 million in relation to the collaboration agreement with Targacept Inc. following the decision to commence Proof of Concept studies on AZD3480 during December. The payment has been capitalised as an intangible asset.

Subsequent to year-end, on 11 January 2007, the Company announced a worldwide collaboration agreement with Bristol-Myers Squibb to develop and commercialise two investigational compounds being studied for the treatment of Type 2 Diabetes. The upfront payment of $100 million has been paid and will be capitalised as an intangible asset.

Dividends and Shareholder Return

The Board has recommended a 34 percent increase in the second interim dividend to $1.23 (63.0 pence, 8.60 SEK) to be paid on 19 March 2007. This brings the full year dividend to $1.72 (89.6 pence, 12.20 SEK) an increase of 32 percent.

In line with the policy stated last year the Board intends to continue its practice of growing dividends in line with earnings (maintaining dividend cover in the two to three times range) whilst substantially distributing the balance of cash flow via share repurchases. In 2006, $6,367 million ($5,382 million net of share issues) was distributed from free cash flow of $6,788 million via dividends and share repurchases. The Board intends to continue this policy, but firmly believes that the first call on free cash flow is business need and, having fulfilled that, will return surplus cash flow to shareholders. The primary business need is to build the research pipeline by supporting internal and external opportunitites. On this basis the Board has targeted share repurchases (net of shares issued) of $4 billion for 2007.

Share Repurchase Programme

During the fourth quarter, 19.7 million shares were repurchased for cancellation at a total cost of $1,189 million bringing the total repurchase for the full year to 72.2 million shares at a total cost of $4,147 million. During the year, 23.6 million shares were issued, in consideration of share option exercises and in relation to employee share plans, for a total of $985 million.

The total number of shares in issue at 31 December 2006 is 1,532 million.

The share buy back programme is calculated to have added 6 cents to EPS for the year, after allowing for an estimate of interest income foregone.

R&D Update

An updated R&D pipeline table is appended to this press release and is also available on the Company's website, www.astrazeneca.com, under information for investors.

The AstraZeneca pipeline now totals 120 projects, 95 of which involve new chemical entities (NCE's) and 25 for the lifecycle management (LCM) of products already on the market. The corresponding figures as at the last update in June 2006 were: 103 projects; 79 NCE's; 24 LCM.

On 11 January 2007, AstraZeneca announced a worldwide collaboration with Bristol-Myers Squibb to develop and commercialise two diabetes compounds, including saxagliptin, a DPP-4 inhibitor in Phase III development and dapagliflozin, a sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitor in Phase IIb development. Since December 2005 externalisation efforts have added five Phase II and two Phase III molecules to our development pipeline. In addition, a further 21 new molecules entered development from our laboratories, and the early pipeline progressed well with 12 first human exposures in the year.

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AstraZeneca PLC

In January 2007, data from three clinical trials demonstrating the effects of Crestor on atherosclerosis were submitted to regulatory authorities in the US and the European Union. The METEOR trial is considered the pivotal trial for registration purposes, with the ASTEROID and ORION studies providing supportive data. The METEOR study has been submitted for presentation at the American College of Cardiology Scientific sessions in March 2007.

Seroquel SR data for the treatment of schizophrenia were submitted for registration in the US in July, and in the EU in October 2006. Data for IR (immediate release) for bipolar depression will be submitted in the EU in the fourth quarter 2007. Positive clinical data have been generated in studies switching patients from Seroquel IR to Seroquel SR, relapse prevention utilising Seroquel SR, and bipolar maintenance for Seroquel IR. A large lifecycle management programme is ongoing. The target date for the US regulatory submission of Seroquel SR for generalised anxiety disorder has been revised to the first half of 2008. There is no change to the submission target for major depressive disorder.

For Iressa™, Study V-15-32, a Phase III NSCLC, Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (the Japanese Regulator) post-approval commitment study in a Japanese patient population, did not meet its primary objective of demonstrating non-inferiority for Iressa™ versus docetaxel (Taxotere™) for overall survival. However, AstraZeneca believe these data have not altered the risk:benefit profile of Iressa™ in pre-treated Japanese NSCLC patients.

As previously announced by AtheroGenics, Inc., top-line results from the pivotal Phase III ARISE trial for AGI-1067 are likely to be available no sooner than late in the first quarter 2007. AtheroGenics, Inc. also reported that it continues to work towards its goal of presenting the results at the American College of Cardiology Scientific sessions in March 2007.

In December 2006, following successful completion of a previously disclosed Phase IIa programme of safety and product characterisation studies, AstraZeneca decided to continue development of AZD3480 in Alzheimer's disease and cognitive deficits in schizophrenia. This decision triggered a $20 million milestone payment to Targacept Inc. under the parties' collaboration agreement.

Calendar    



     
26 April 2007   Announcement of first quarter 2007 results
26 April 2007   Annual General Meeting 2007
26 July 2007   Announcement of second quarter and half year 2007 results
1 November 2007   Announcement of third quarter and nine months 2007 results
 
 
 
David Brennan    
Chief Executive Officer    

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EXCERPTS ON THIS PAGE:

6-K
Mar 6, 2007
6-K
Feb 6, 2007
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