Fisons pharmaceutical sales hit by FDA move

23 September 1991 00:00  [Source: ICB]

FISONS REPORTED a marginal increase in net profit for the first half of 1991, as increasing finance charges were compounded by a FDA move which lost the company about £10m ($17.5m) in sales. After-tax profit and sales both edged up a mere 1.4% to £71.4m and £591m, respectively.

The group reported increased trading profit in each of its three businesses, increasing overall by 11.5% to £99.5m. The finance charge reversed from a £1m gain last time to a £4.3m charge, which is the first sign that even Fisons' legendary treasury management abilities cannot be maintained when the interest margin between the US (where funds are borrowed) and the UK (where funds are deposited) narrows.

Fisons H1 results (£m)
  Change,%   Op profit   Change %

243.6 (1.1) 68.1 12.3
Scientific equipment     305.2 3.5 27.0 8.0
Horticulture 42.2 1.4 4.4 22.2
Total 591.0 1.4 99.5 11.5

Net borrowings increased from £115m to £185m. Earnings per share were static at 10.4p because of the higher number of shares on the market after the rights issue which funded the acquisition of VG Instruments in February last year.

Fisons' pharmaceutical division sales turned down 1.1% to £243.6m, but trading profit increased 12.3%. The main problem was that new manufacturing requirements by the FDA, caused Fisons to suspend production of two products for the US market, Opticrom and Imferon, while sterile production facilities are refurbished. The company also announced that it has received the first approval to market the nasal version of nedocromil, Tilarin, for the relief of hay fever symptoms in Germany.

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