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Hi-Tech Pharmacal reports profits up 41%

Amityville-based Hi-Tech Pharmacal headquarters on Sept. 10, 2012.

Amityville-based Hi-Tech Pharmacal headquarters on Sept. 10, 2012. Credit: Steve Pfost

Hi-Tech Pharmacal Co. Inc. Tuesday reported its profit rose 41 percent in the November-January period compared with a year earlier, even as sales of a signature nasal spray dropped.

The Amityville-based drugmaker said its profit for the three months ended Jan. 31 was $8.4 million, compared with $6 million a year earlier.

Sales in Hi-Tech's fiscal third quarter fell 7 percent to $60 million from the same period in fiscal 2013.

Much of the decline came from fluticasone propionate, a generic version of the Flonase nasal spray used to treat sinus ailments. Its sales dropped to $11 million from $23 million a year ago.

The company brought in more money from its brand-name drugs, including the cold medicine TussiCaps, by charging more. Revenue from brand-name products rose 58 percent in the quarter to $8 million.

Hi-Tech also said it expects its sale to another drugmaker, Akorn Inc. of Lake Forest, Ill., to be completed next month. The $640-million deal was announced in August.

Hi-Tech has 447 employees, about 400 locally. Akorn, which produces TheraTears eye medicine and is based in a Chicago suburb, has nearly 1,000 workers, including more than 200 at a subsidiary in India.

In a conference call with analysts last year, Akorn officials estimated the Hi-Tech purchase would create a company with sales of more than $500 million per year. They also said Hi-Tech has manufacturing capabilities that Akorn lacks, and a planned expansion of Akorn's Somerset, N.J., factory could be shelved because of the deal.

In trading Tuesday on the Nasdaq stock market, Hi-Tech shares were down 0.14 percent to $43.28.

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