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Johnson & Johnson (JNJ): Strength in ecommerce drives growth in Consumer Health

For the full year of 2021, J&J expects reported sales to increase 9.5-11% to $90.5-91.7 billion

Shares of Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) gained nearly 3% in morning trade on Tuesday after the company reported fourth quarter 2020 earnings results that surpassed market expectations. J&J also provided an outlook for the full year of 2021 that was better than what analysts had in mind.

Quarterly numbers

Total sales rose 8% year-over-year to $22.5 billion while adjusted EPS dipped 1% to $1.86, with both beating estimates. Sales in the US rose almost 10% while international sales grew 7%. Segment-wise, the Pharmaceutical division recorded the highest sales increase of 16% while Consumer Health saw sales grow 1.4%. The Medical Devices segment witnessed a slight decline of around 1% due to the postponement of medical procedures amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Category performance

E-commerce played a key role in driving growth across categories within the Consumer Health division. Over-the-counter sales in the US remained flat due to share and ecommerce/club channel growth across multiple brands such as Tylenol, Pepcid and Zyrtec. Growth declined outside the US as restrictions related to the pandemic led to lower incidences of cough and flu.

In Skin Health/Beauty, momentum in ecommerce helped drive growth both in and outside the US. Brands such as Maui Moisture, Neutrogena and Aveeno contributed to the sales growth. This growth was offset by negative impacts from the pandemic as well as competitive pressures.

In Oral Care and Baby Care, ecommerce growth in brands like Listerine, Johnson’s and Aveeno fueled sales growth. Due to the pandemic, the mouthwash category witnessed growth which helped drive share gains for Listerine. Baby Care sales dropped outside the US hurt by the effects of the pandemic.

Within its Pharmaceutical division, J&J saw growth for Stelara for Crohn’s Disease, Tremfya for psoriasis, and Simponi Aria. The company witnessed declines in Remicade due to increased discounts and rebates as well as biosimilar competition.

In infectious diseases, Symtuza and Juluca saw strong sales growth in the US and EU while Darzalex witnessed strong market growth and share gains across all regions within oncology. Imbruvica witnessed a growth in sales due to market growth in the US and higher patient uptake in international markets. Sales for Velcade declined due to generic competition.

Medical Devices in general saw a drop in sales as medical procedures were deferred due to the pandemic. However, interventional solutions witnessed double-digit growth due to atrial fibrillation procedure growth as well as strong performance from new products like Carto and Vizigo sheath. Sales declined across orthopaedics, surgery and vision due to impacts from the pandemic.


For the full year of 2021, J&J expects reported sales to increase 9.5-11% to $90.5-91.7 billion from the previous year. Adjusted EPS is estimated to increase 17.1-19.6% to $9.40-9.60.

Click here to read the transcripts of the latest earnings conference calls

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