Lab Supplies Drive Merck’s Earnings High

Germany’s Merck on Wednesday said its Life Science business, a leading maker of biotech lab supplies and gear, saw core earnings jump more than 43% in the first quarter, driven by the pharma industry’s efforts to fight the coronavirus pandemic.

Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization at the division rose to 793 million euros ($961 million).

The company, which also makes pharmaceuticals and specialty chemicals, on May 4 reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings for the group ahead of schedule.

At the time it said it expected 2021 adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of 5.4-5.8 billion euros, up from 5.2 billion last year.

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