14 February 2019 07:00 BST
Pascal Soriot, Chief Executive Officer, commenting on the results said:
“Closing the year with another strong quarter, our performance confirmed that AstraZeneca has returned to growth. Our new medicines performed particularly well across the therapy areas and the Emerging Markets business went from strength to strength. 2019 will be a year of focus on continued pipeline delivery and flawless commercial execution. The performance of our new medicines demonstrated the ability of our commercial teams to convert the pipeline into successful medicines.
As we recently entered a new phase in our strategic development, we have refined our organisation to position ourselves for the next phase of our journey. The changes are designed to further integrate research and development and accelerate decision-making and the launches of new medicines, consolidating what we believe is already one of the most exciting and productive pipelines in the industry. We are also enhancing our commercial units to increase collaboration with our R&D organisation, enabling greater commitment to our main therapy areas; we want AstraZeneca to be more agile, collaborative and focused as we enter a period of sustained growth.
Our strategy and plans remain unchanged, with sales growth and a focus on cost management anticipated to drive growing operating profit. I’m pleased that we are fully on track to meet these commitments as we build a sustainable level of growth and a pipeline that is benefitting more and more patients around the world.”