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Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD) reported 52% growth in revenues for Q3 over the same period last year to $749 million. In today's conference call with analysts, CFO John Milligan explains the source of the growth:

Total revenues for the third quarter of 2006 were $749 million, an increase of 52% from total revenues of $493 million in the third quarter of 2005. This growth was primarily driven by higher HIV product sales and higher royalty revenues from Roche’s second quarter Tamiflu sales. Revenue from Gilead’s product sales were $670 million, an increase of 43% from the third quarter of this year compared to the same period of last year, driven primarily by our strong HIV product sales. Product sales increased sequentially by 13% compared to the second quarter of this year. HIV product sales grew to $557 million for the third quarter of 2006, up 53% compared to $364 million in the third quarter of 2005 and up 17% sequentially from the second quarter of 2006.

Truvada sales were $309 million for the third quarter of 2006, almost double Truvada sales for the same period last year and an increase of 3% sequentially. Truvada sales accounted for more than half of our total HIV franchise sales in the third quarter of 2006. In the United States, Truvada sales were 201 million in the third quarter of 2006, an increase of 44% compared to the third quarter of 2005, but a decrease of 3% sequentially, likely due to patients switching from a Truvada containing regimen to one containing Atripla.

Viread sales in the United States for the third quarter of 2006 decreased by 4% compared both to the same period last year and sequentially. In its first quarter on the market, Atripla contributed $68 million to our HIV franchise sales. As a reminder, Gilead records 100% of the Atripla revenue, since Gilead consolidates the financial results of our joint venture with BMS. The economic value of Sustiva, which is distributed back to BMS, is captured in our cost of goods sold line. The Sustiva component of ATRIPLA sales comprised approximately $25 million of the $68 million, with Truvada comprising the remainder.

In Europe, Truvada sales in the third quarter of 2006 increased sequentially by 60%, while Viread sales decreased sequentially by 10%. We continue to see the impact of the European launch of Truvada on Viread and expect, as we saw in the United States, declining sales of Viread as patients switch from a Viread containing regimen to one containing Truvada. However, in countries where Truvada is either early in its launch or has not yet launched Viread sales remain strong. As for the United States, Viread should stabilize because it will continue to be a critical component of HIV therapy in Europe. In the U.S., we also see the impact of Atripla launch on Truvada and expect Truvada sales to begin to level off but remain strong because Truvada is now established as the NRTI backbone of choice with protease inhibitors.

Hepsera for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B had sales of $55 million in the third quarter of 2006, an 18% increase compared to the third quarter of 2005, driven primarily by sales volume growth in our European markets. Hepsera sales decreased slightly by 3% from the second quarter of 2006 due primarily to a reclassification of a pharmaceutical tax imposed by the French government from expenses to contra revenue.

Finally, sales of AmBisome were $55 million for the third quarter of 2006, an increase of 1% over the same period of 2005. Compared to the same period last year, revenue from Gilead’s royalty and contract revenues for the third quarter of 2006 nearly tripled. This was due primarily to increased Tamiflu royalty revenues recognized from higher Tamiflu sales made by Roche, as well as the elimination of the cost of goods adjustment, which had historically reduced the amount of Tamiflu royalties paid to Gilead. The royalty payment received from Roche was $63 million. Total royalty and contract revenues decreased sequentially by $16 million due primarily to the seasonality of the flu and the resulting impact on Roche’s Tamiflu sales.

As you may know, Roche released our third quarter 2006 earnings yesterday and reported quarterly Tamiflu sales of CHF669 million or approximately $529 million based on current currency exchange rates. Gilead will record royalty revenues from these sales after certain adjustments at 22% during the fourth quarter of this year, since royalties are paid one quarter in arrears. In Roche’s earnings call, their management increased their (indiscernible) guidance from a range of CHF1.2 to CHF1.3 billion to a range of CHF1.6 to CHF1.7 billion and reconfirmed that by year-end, they will have capacity to provide 400 million treatment courses annually.

For more, see the entire conference call transcript (free). A full list of the most recent conference call transcripts on Seeking Alpha is here.

Source: HIV and Flu Drive Growth at Gilead