The last time Horizon Therapeutics (NASDAQ:HZNP) formerly known as Horizon Pharmaceuticals, announced its quarterly results, investors were treated to some very good news. Revenue increased 30% year over year while adjusted earnings soared by a whopping 141%.

Investors learned how Horizon performed in the first quarter on Wednesday with the company announcing its results before the market opened. How did Horizon fare? Here's what you need to know about the drugmaker's Q1 results.

Scientist holding a test tube with healthcare icons displayed in the foreground

Image source: Getty Images.

By the numbers

Horizon reported revenue in the first quarter of $280.4 million. This reflected a 25% increase over the prior-year period revenue total of $223.9 million. The consensus Wall Street analysts' estimate projected Q1 revenue of $238.35 million.

How did Horizon's bottom line look in the first quarter? The company reported a net loss of $32.9 million, or $0.19 per share, on a GAAP basis, compared with $148.7 million, or $0.90 per share, in the same period in 2018.

The company announced first-quarter adjusted earnings of $53.9 million, or $0.30 per share. This represented a skyrocketing 1,023% increase from adjusted earnings of $4.8 million, or $0.03 per share, reported in the same quarter of 2018. Analysts were expecting Q1 adjusted earnings of $0.12 per share.

Behind the numbers

Several drugs contributed to Horizon's success in the first quarter. Among the company's orphan disease drugs, Procysbi especially stood out. Sales for the cysteamine therapy increased by 13% year over year to $39.6 million. Horizon also reported sales for urea cycle disorder drug Ravicti of $49.9 million, up 2% from the prior-year period.

A couple of Horizon's rheumatology drugs also performed very well in Q1. Sales for gout drug Krystexxa increased 12% year over year to $52.3 million. Sales for corticosteroid Rayos soared 82% to $19.4 million.

But the strongest growth of all for Horizon in the first quarter came from its primary care segment. Sales for anti-inflammatory drug Pennsaid skyrocketed 87% year over year to $50.2 million. Another anti-inflammatory drug, Duexis, generated even greater growth, with sales increasing 88% over the prior-year period to $29.5 million. Sales for arthritis pain reliever Vimovo jumped 68% higher to $14 million.

Horizon also significantly reduced its operating expenses in the first quarter, leading to improvement on its bottom line. Total operating expenses fell 16% from the prior-year period to $194 million. 

Looking ahead

Horizon expects that net sales for full-year 2019 will be between $1.26 billion and $1.28 billion, up from the previous guidance of $1.23 billion and $1.25 billion. The company anticipates full-year adjusted EBITDA to be between $450 million and $465 million, an increase from the previous guidance range of $440 million and $455 million.

CEO Timothy Walbert's comments in Horizon's press release highlighted one important development for investors to watch in the near future. Walbert mentioned the "dramatic teprotumumab Phase 3 trial results" that Horizon reported during the first quarter. The company should soon file for regulatory approval of the drug, which targets the treatment of active thyroid disease.