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Drugmaker warns of profit pressure

December 13, 2008

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— Eli Lilly and Co. said Thursday its $6.5 billion ImClone acquisition will wipe out its 2008 profit and dent next year’s earnings as well.

But the drugmaker’s leaders assured analysts that their product pipeline boasts unprecedented strength, and the ImClone purchase and other deals made this year will pay off.

“All these moves strengthen our business and our pipeline, and we intend to continue this aggressive pace,” Chief Executive John Lechleiter said during opening remarks webcast from the company’s annual investor update in New York City.

In October, Lilly and Lawrence-based Deciphera Pharmaceuticals announced they were teaming up to license and develop technology designed to fight cancer.

Indianapolis-based Lilly closed the ImClone purchase in November.

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