Pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline saw sales and net earnings grow in the fourth quarter but warned that tougher competition from generic drugmakers this year could depress its earnings.
The London-based company said Wednesday its net income rose to 257 million pounds, from a loss of 354 million pounds a year earlier. Sales rose to 7.6 billion pounds, above both market expectations for 7.5 billion pounds and the previous year's figure of 6.3 billion pounds.
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But GSK shares fell after CEO Andrew Witty said that "this year we face some uncertainty as to the level of our earnings performance."
He highlighted the risk that a generic version of GSK's asthma drug Advair could be introduced in the U.S. If that happens, core earnings would be flat, instead of up by 5-7 percent.