Abbott Laboratories ABT
Q3 2011 Earnings Call Transcript

Transcript Call Date 10/19/2011

Operator: Good morning, and thank you for standing by. Welcome to Abbott's Third Quarter 2011 Earnings Conference Call. All participants will be able to listen-only until the question-and-answer portion of this call. Should you become disconnected throughout this conference call, please dial 1-517-308-9049 and reference the Abbott earnings 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: Thanks Lon. Good morning, everyone, and thanks for joining us. Today, we're going to be discussing two important Abbott news events. First, our announcement to separate into two independent publicly traded companies, one in diversified medical products and the other in research-based pharmaceuticals; and second, we'll be talking about our strong third quarter ongoing earnings results.

Joining me on today's call is Miles White, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer; Tom Freyman, our Executive Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer; Rick Gonzalez, Executive Vice President, Global Pharmaceutical; and Larry Peepo, Divisional Vice President of Investor Relations. Miles and Rick will review the strategic rationale related to our announcement this morning as well as provide an overview of each of these new companies and their investment identities. Tom will discuss certain financial aspects and conclude with a brief review of our third quarter results, which we've summarized today to allow for sufficient time to discuss today's other major announcement.

Details on our third quarter can be found in our earnings news release. Following our comments today, of course, we'll take any questions you have as always. I'd also note that we posted a 12-page slide deck to our Abbott website this morning at and this deck summarizes the details of our announcement this morning regarding the separation. In addition this morning, I'm pleased to announce that we will be hosting a 2-hour investor meeting this coming Friday in New York. Miles, Rick Gonzalez, Tom Freyman, as well as Dr. John Leonard, our Head of Pharmaceutical Research and Development will be in attendance along with myself, Larry, and some other people from our Investor Relations, and Media department.

At Friday's meeting, we will discuss the growth opportunities in Abbott's diversified medical products business as well as growth opportunities in the research-based pharmaceutical company. We're going to walk you through the pharmaceutical pipeline in more detail, and we will spotlight certain programs that we're particularly enthused about, including early data from our HCV trials, and Rick will talk more about that in a minute.

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