Glaxo profit soars 50% on shingles drug sales

London (AFP) –


British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline announced Wednesday that net profit soared 51 percent in the first quarter, boosted by increasing demand for its shingles vaccine Shingrix.

Profit after tax leapt to £830 million ($1.1 billion, 963 million euros) in the three months to the end of March, GSK said in a result statement.

That compared with net profit of £549 million in the same period of 2018.

Group sales grew six percent to £7.7 billion in the reporting period.

Vaccines turnover jumped 20 percent to £1.52 billion in a performance that was "primarily driven by growth in sales of Shingrix", GSK said.

"Strengthening our (drugs) pipeline remains our number one priority and we reported positive data for several potential new medicines in HIV and oncology during the quarter," chief executive Emma Walmsley said in the statement.