Nycomed - strong results in second quarter 2008

NycomedIn the first six months of 2008, Nycomed’s adjusted EBITDA increased by 4.9% to € 653.7 million compared to € 623.3 million in the first six months of 2007, benefiting from the cost decreasing effects of last year’s restructuring and as a result of the successful integration. Most of Nycomed's markets and key products have performed well for the first half year of 2008 and provided a counterweight to the decreasing sales of Pantoprazole in the US.

Total net turnover decreased by 3.4% to € 1,714.5 million compared to € 1,774.0 million in the first six months of 2007 primarily due to the negative effect of "at-risk" launches of generic Pantoprazole in the US and positively impacted by the execution payment from the out-licensing agreement with Sepracor. Adjusting for these effects and the loss of the imaging business from Bracco, total net turnover in the first half year increased by 3.1% compared to the same period in 2007.

"We are pleased to report that the second quarter of 2008 has been very satisfactory for Nycomed. Our home markets, especially the Western European key markets, continue to trade significantly above our expectations," said Håkan Björklund, Nycomed’s Chief Executive Officer.

"The in-licensing agreement with Immunomedics on veltuzumab is a significant addition to our pipeline. Veltuzumab offers an excellent strategic fit with Nycomed's other programs in the field of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases," he added.

Most markets have performed well for the first six months of 2008. Sales in Russia/CIS grew by 18.0% (37.0% in local currency) while sales in Germany developed satisfactorily despite significant price reductions. Pantoprazole sales in Canada and Spain were impacted by generic competition and price reductions respectively.

In Europe, sales in the first six months remained stable compared to the same period 2007. Most of the Scandinavian and Central European countries are characterised by a stable demand with single-digit market growth. In Italy, sales in the second quarter have increased considerably, showing a 28.8% growth compared to the same period in 2007. Excluding the imaging business, sales in Germany increased by 6.2% for the six-month period. The markets in Eastern Europe showed double-digit growth compared to first half 2007, notably Czech Republic and Croatia, while Romania and Greece nearly doubled net turnover.

In the Latin America, Canada and South Africa region (Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Canada and South Africa) total net turnover decreased by 6.9% for the first six months compared to the same period in 2007. The declining growth is mainly caused by considerably lower Pantoprazole sales in the second quarter of 2008 in Canada as a result of the entry of generics. Sales in Argentina are showing very positive trends. June year-to-date sales in Brazil were slightly above sales for the first six months of 2007 in local currency, whereas sales in Mexico and South Africa have slightly decreased in local currency compared to the previous year.

In Russia/CIS, Nycomed's fastest growing region, sales increased by 18.0% for the first six months of 2008 compared to the same period in 2007. However, adjusting for the unfavourable impact from exchange rates, sales growth was approximately 37.0% in local currency for the first six months. Sales growth, in local currencies, was approximately 28.0% for the second quarter.

Total sales of Nycomed US, a specialty business focusing on dermatology and emergency care in the United States, increased by 14.4% for the first six months. This result was impacted by the acquisition of Bradley. Adjusting for this and for the unfavourable impact of the US dollar, sales increased by 3.0% for the first six months of 2008 compared to 2007.

For the total International Sales/Export business, excluding Australia, product sales for the first six months decreased approximately 7.0% compared to the same period in 2007 mainly due to lower sales of Pantoprazole and a few other products in Asia.

Contract production grew by 18.9% to € 35.4 millions for the first six months of 2008 due to increased demand related to Nycomed's contract manufacturing agreements.

About Nycomed
Nycomed is a privately owned pharmaceutical company that provides medicines for hospitals, specialists and general practitioners, as well as over-the-counter medicines in selected markets. The company is active in a range of therapeutic areas, focusing on gastroenterology, respiratory, inflammation, pain management, osteoporosis and surgical management. New products are sourced both, from its own research and from business partners.

Nycomed is European based with a presence in over 50 countries worldwide and an increasing emphasis on fast growing markets.

The combined group employs 12,000 people. In 2007, it had annual sales of € 3.5 billion and an adjusted EBITDA of € 1.2 billion.

For more information visit www.nycomed.com.

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