South Korea’s biosimilar manufacturer Samsung BioLogics Co. surprised the market after posting a more than fourfold increase in its operating profit in the fourth quarter ended December last year thanks to the improved plant operation and favorable currency rates.
The company announced in a regulatory filing on Wednesday that its operating profit for the final three months of 2019 on a consolidated basis reached 107 billion won ($91.7 million), soaring 353 percent from the previous quarter and 830 percent from the same period of the previous year. The figure came 140 percent higher than the market estimate of 44.3 billion won.
Sales also jumped 69.5 percent on quarter and 75.8 percent on year to 313.3 billion won.
Boosted by the stellar results, shares of Samsung BioLogics jumped 6.86 percent to close Thursday at 483,000 won, after touching a new 52-week-high of 493,000 won in the morning.
For the entire 2019, operating profit soared 64.8 percent from a year ago to 91.7 billion won with revenue up 30.9 percent to 701.6 billion won. Net profit dropped 9.5 percent to 202.9 billion won, but the drop was owed to the base effect from the cash inflow of 389.2 billion won reflected as one-off gains in the 2018 statement.
The company attributed the strong performance to the increased factory utilization for all of its 1, 2, 3 plants, as well as favorable currency conditions. The dollar rose 6 percent to average 1,166 won in 2019 from a year earlier, according to the Bank of Korea.
At the JP Morgan Healthcare Conference held last week in San Francisco, Samsung BioLogics said it won 35 contract manufacturing organization (CMO), 42 contract development organization (CDO) and contract research organization (CRO) contracts, and aims to secure at least 12 CMOs and 18 CDOs this year.
The company also plans to establish a CDO R&D lab in San Francisco this year, and increase the order volume for its factory 3 to 60 percent of its capacity by the end of the year.
By Kim Gyu-sik and Choi Mira
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