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Abbott Laboratories ABT
Q1 2011 Earnings Call Transcript

Transcript Call Date 04/20/2011

Operator: Good morning. Welcome to Abbott's First Quarter 2011 Earnings Conference Call. All participants will be able to listen-only until the question-and-answer portion of this call. This call is being recorded by Abbott. With the exception of any participant's questions asked during the question-and-answer session, the entire call including the question-and-answer session is material copyrighted by Abbott. It cannot be recorded or rebroadcast without Abbott's expressed written permission.

I would now like to introduce Mr. John Thomas, Vice President, Investor Relations and Public Affairs.

John B. Thomas - VP, IR and Public Affairs: Good morning and thanks everyone for joining us. Also on today's call will be Tom Freyman, Executive Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer; and Larry Peepo, Divisional Vice President of Investor Relations.

Tom will review the details of our financial results for the quarter and the outlook for the year. Larry and I will then discuss the highlights of our major businesses. Following our comments, we will take your questions.

Some statements made today maybe forward-looking. Abbott cautions that these forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Factors that may affect Abbott's operations are discussed in Item 1A Risk Factors to our Annual Report on Securities and Exchange Commission Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010 and are incorporated by reference. We undertake no obligation to release publicly any revisions to forward-looking statements as a result of subsequent events or developments.

Today's conference call as in the past, non-GAAP financial measures will be used to help investors understand Abbott's ongoing business performance. These non-GAAP financial measures are reconciled with the comparable GAAP financial measure in our earnings news release and regulatory filings from today, which will be available on our website at Abbott.com.

With that, I will turn the call over to Tom. Tom?

Thomas C. Freyman - EVP, Finance and CFO: Thanks, John. Today we're pleased to report strong first quarter results as we deliver higher than expected sales growth of 17.4% and higher than expected ongoing earnings per share of $0.91. This is above our previous guidance range of $0.88 to $0.90 and reflects growth of 12.3%.

As you may have noticed in our earnings release this morning, in addition to providing the same division and product level disclosure as in the past, you'll also see that we're presenting our businesses in three categories based on their underlying attributes.

Durable growth businesses include our branded generics business called Established Pharmaceuticals, as well as Nutritionals, Core Diagnostics and Diabetes Care. These businesses are less dependent on significant R&D investment, have minimal patent risk and operate in generally stable markets. In the quarter, durable growth sales were up more than 24% globally including the contributions from the Solvay Pharmaceuticals and Piramal Healthcare Solutions acquisitions.

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