Struggling Bioton looks forward
Warsaw – Polish insulin, antibiotics, and biosimilar producer Bioton SA has doubled its second-quarter net loss to PLN39m (–EUR9.3m) because sales fell by 8% in the period from April to June. The company, which is restructuring after a management change in January (see EuroBiotechNews 1-2/2009), took an operating loss of PLN49m (–EUR11.7m) in the first half of the year after a profit of PLN24m (+EUR5.7m) million a year ago. The result was within the range of what analysts had expected.
Bioton, which is looking to strengthen its presence in the key insulin markets of China and India through cooperation agreements, plans to lauch new biotechnological products by 2012 that have been developed by its Swiss subsidiary Biopartners. In the course of the restructuring process, 25% of Biopartners staff has been cut compared to 2008. Bioton also said it is in licensing talks with big pharma companies concerning the subsidiary’s biosimilar pipeline, which currently consists of interferon beta and human growth hormone (hGH SR). There are also ongoing discussions about the best way to commercialise Biopartners’ interferon beta biosimilar Biferonex, including applications in the US and Australian markets and re-submission to the European Medicines Agency. Bioton estimates the annual EU market for human growth hormone at a400m, and that for interferon beta at about EUR1.2bn.