UCB Manufacturing losses fall 50% to €72m

PRE-TAX losses at Shannon-based pharmaceutical firm UCB Manufacturing Ireland Ltd more than halved to €71.9 million in 2010, new figures show.

According to accounts recently filed by the Belgian-owned company, they show that the firm recorded a pre-tax loss of €71.9m in 2010 following a pre-tax loss of €182.8m in 2009.

The figures show that the company (formerly Schwarz Pharma Ltd) increased its turnover by €2m to €81.4m in the year to the end of December 2010.

In 2010, the numbers employed reduced from 173 to 126 with the company’s staff costs reducing from €13.9m to €9.6m.

The accounts show that the company reduced its operating loss in 2010 from €160.1m to €40.1m, as exceptional operating expenses arising from a fixed asset impairment dropped from €115.5m to €1.3m.

The figures show the firm’s net interest charges totalling €31m increased the firm’s losses to €71.9m.

The loss takes account of combined non-cash depreciation and amortisation costs totalling €21m.

The loss in 2010 also took account of €251,707 in restructuring costs compared to €1.3m spent under the same heading in 2009.

The directors’ report confirms turnover continues to grow mainly due to a strong performance from Neupro, which is used to treat sufferers of Parkinon’s disease.

The report continues: “Neupro continues to perform well with a number of launches achieved in 2010 and more planned in 2011 and beyond. The company is proactively working to relaunch the product into the US market which is expected in quarter 3 of 2012.”

The report states: “The company is committed to its research and development activities and in particular with the Neupro range of products. The research and development activities have been undertaken and supported by other group companies.” The directors state that “a second brand of Neupro has since been approved for a major European market, which is intended to increase its share of that market”.

The report states that “the company is actively involved in sourcing new products for the site and detailed evaluations have been carried out and reviewed with management. The accounts confirm that the company spent €29.2m on Research and Development &last year. The directors state that the activities “are concentrated on the clinical development and testing of new drugs in the field of neurological disorders”.

The company had a shareholders’ deficit of €424.3m at the end of December 2010.

Addressing the company’s going concern status, a note attached to the accounts states that “the parent company has issued a letter of support confirming that it will provide such financial support to ensure that the company meets all of its liabilities as they fall due for at least 12 months”.

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