Granules India posts Q4 revenue fall on weak paracetamol sales, price erosion

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Drugmaker Granules India posted a 1.6% fall in fourth-quarter revenue on Wednesday, hurt by a decline in paracetamol sales and price erosion.

The company's consolidated revenue fell year-on-year to 11.76 billion rupees (nearly $141 million) for the three months to March 31.

Granules, which focuses on making active pharmaceutical ingredients (API), holds 30% of the global market for Paracetamol. It makes the drug's API as well as the finished dosage - the ready-for-consumption product.

Still, weak sales of the drug and price erosion due to heightened competition hurt its revenue. This is despite analysts expecting Indian API makers, including Granules, to benefit from increasing demand from Europe and the U.S., the industry's biggest markets.

Shares fell as much as 2.6% after it reported its results.

Rivals Glenmark Life Sciences and Laurus Labs posted lower fourth-quarter profits.

Glenmark's revenue was hit by issues stemming from the Red Sea crisis while Laurus was challenged by multiple factors including a decline in selling prices of antiretroviral products.

A 9.5% drop in Granules' raw material expenses, meanwhile, helped its quarterly profit climb 8.4% to 1.30 billion rupees.

API makers use a variety of chemicals in their formulations, including hydrochloric acid and chloroform, accounting for a majority of the drug-makers' input costs.

The easing costs had helped its profit marginally climb in the third quarter as well, before which profit fell for two straight quarters.

($1 = 83.4750 Indian rupees)

(Reporting by Varun Hebbalalu in Bengaluru; Editing by Janane Venkatraman)