Don't be fooled by Regeneron Pharmaceuticals' (NASDAQ:REGN) year-to-date stock performance. The big biotech's shares might not have done much in 2021, but Regeneron has chalked up several big achievements. It's also made a lot more money.

Just how much more was evident when Regeneron announced its first-quarter results before the market opened today. The biotech stock rose nearly 2% in early trading. Here are the highlights from Regeneron's first-quarter update.   

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By the numbers

Regeneron reported revenue in the first quarter of $2.53 billion, an impressive 38% year-over-year jump. But this result still fell a little short of the consensus Wall Street estimate of $2.56 billion.

The company announced net income of $1.12 billion, or $10.09 per share, based on generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP). In the prior-year period, Regeneron posted GAAP earnings of 625 million, or $5.43 per share.

Adjusted earnings came in close to Regeneron's GAAP figures. The biotech recorded adjusted net income of $1.11 billion, or $9.89 per share, up from adjusted earnings of $771 million, or $6.60 per share, in the prior-year period. This result handily beat the average analyst  estimate of $9.03 per share.

Behind the numbers

Nearly all of Regeneron's products delivered solid growth in the first quarter. The biggest winner was COVID-19 antibody cocktail REGEN-COV, which generated sales of $262 million. To put into context just how important the new therapy was for Regeneron, the company's overall revenue growth would have been 18% lower without REGEN-COV.

The biotech's collaboration revenue also jumped nearly 43% year over year. Regeneron's portion of Roche's sales of the COVID-19 antibody cocktail outside of the U.S. totaled $67 million. Revenue from the company's collaboration with Sanofi soared close to 48% to $365 million, driven primarily by sales of antibody therapies, especially Dupixent.

Regeneron also continued to benefit from its long-term relationship with Bayer on eye-disease drug Eylea. The company's Bayer collaboration revenue increased nearly 15% to $333 million. 

Looking ahead

The biotech expects sustained growth for Eylea and Dupixent. Regeneron also thinks the momentum for Libtayo will accelerate. The immunotherapy recently picked up new U.S. regulatory approvals as a first-line treatment for advanced non-small cell lung cancer and in treating advanced basal cell carcinoma. Regeneron plans to submit additional regulatory filings later this year.

There's a question mark, though, about the long-term prospects for REGEN-COV. Regeneron recently reported positive late-stage results for the antibody cocktail as a COVID-19 outpatient treatment and in preventing infection. But with the increased availability of COVID-19 vaccines in the U.S. and in Europe, it's possible that the demand for REGEN-COV could fall over time.

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