BTG plc: 2002 AGM Statement.
LONDON--(BW HealthWire)--July 30, 2002
BTG plc (LSE: BGC), the global technology commercialization company, will hold its 2002 Annual General Meeting today at 10:30 am at the company's London offices.
The following is a summary of comments to be made by Ian Harvey, Chief Executive Officer, and Dr. Jack Leonard, Chairman.
"BTG's financial results for the year ended March 31, 2002 were in line with the Board's expectations. There was an encouraging growth in revenues both from new licenses and from royalties on marketed products. Our reported loss, which increased as anticipated, reflected the planned expansion of our business following the Rights Issue in October 2000. We finished the year with a strong cash position, which will enable us to continue to invest in the acquisition, development and commercialization of exciting early stage life and physical sciences technologies.
BTG continues to have access to an excellent pipeline of high quality new technologies, in particular from the US university sector. Our financial resources are enabling us to invest in developing selected technologies, where this will increase their value to a potential licensee. We plan to increase our commitment to such development projects in the year ahead.
As we have previously said, we expect the environment for commercializing technologies to remain challenging, particularly in the high tech sectors. However, we remain confident that the quality of developing technologies in our portfolio will continue to attract licensees and investment partners for the benefit of BTG shareholders.
During the past two weeks there have been two positive developments for the company. The European Patent Office has decided to uphold one of our patents relating to the advanced SIM cards that have been used in mobile telephones for the past eighteen months or so. We are now in a strong position to begin negotiations to grant licenses to manufacturers of these cards. In addition, the US Food & Drug Administration has granted approval for our subsidiary Provensis to commence a clinical study with Varisolve(R), the rapid, non-invasive procedure being developed to treat varicose veins. We expect this to begin in September.
We have recently refined our organizational structure to improve customer focus and operational effectiveness, and to take advantage of the increasing number of opportunities where the physical and life sciences overlap, for example in nanotechnology, biochips and bioinformatics. Our operations will be managed through one operating division rather than two divisions as previously, and we have created a new Operations Leadership Team to manage day-to-day business. Anthony Lando, who has been appointed Chief Operating Officer of BTG, will relocate to the UK and will chair this team. Geoff Dobson has been appointed General Manager of BTG in the US.
We have also created a new investment entity, to be chaired by Rusi Kathoke, Chief Financial Officer. This unit, which will have its own Board comprising members of the BTG plc Board and external advisers, will in future approve and monitor all of BTG's venture activities and equity investments.
Douglas Fairservice retires today from the Board of BTG after nine years' service, and we thank him for his valuable contribution both before and since BTG became a public company. During the year, we appointed Fred Weiss, whose experience in the pharmaceutical industry is already having an impact, especially in our life sciences business. We are delighted to appoint Consuelo Brooke to the Board today. Aged 55, Mrs. Brooke was previously a Managing Director of Merrill Lynch Investment Managers, a Director of Mercury Asset Management Holdings and a Director of Warburg Investment Management. She is currently a Non-executive Director of Xansa plc and a member of the Board of University of Sussex Intellectual Property Ltd. Her tremendous experience in the investment industry will be an asset to BTG going forward(a).
We believe we have in place the right people, the financial resources and right strategy to build a valuable technology commercialization business, and we look forward to demonstrating further progress towards this goal in the year ahead."
Dr Jack Leonard Ian Harvey Chairman Chief Executive Officer
(a) There are no details which require to be disclosed under paragraph 6.F.2 (b)-(g) of the UKLA Listing Rules for Consuelo Brooke.
BTG finds, develops and commercializes emerging technologies in the life and physical sciences. These innovations are protected by a strong portfolio of intellectual property that BTG develops and enhances. BTG then captures the value in these technologies through licensing and venturing activities. From the origins of its business in 1949, BTG has commercialized major innovations such as Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), recombinant factor IX blood-clotting protein, Campath(R) (alemtuzumab) and Multi Level Cell (MLC) memory. BTG is quoted on the London Stock Exchange under the symbol "BGC" and operates from offices in London and Philadelphia, with representation in Tokyo. BTG operates through wholly owned subsidiaries, BTG International Ltd. and BTG International Inc. in the UK and USA respectively. Further information on BTG can be found at www.btgplc.com.
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|Date:||Jul 30, 2002|
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