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 GODMANCHESTER, U.K., Jan. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Ethical Holdings plc (NASDAQ: ETHCY) today reported its first quarter operating results for fiscal 1994.
 For three months ended Nov. 30, 1993, the company posted a net loss of pounds sterling 1,402,718 (U.S. dollars 2,080,371) representing pnds 0.10 (dlrs 0.15) per share. In the corresponding period in fiscal 1993, the company posed a net loss of pnds 532,339 (dlrs 803,832) from continuing operations equivalent to pnds 0.06 (dlrs 0.08) per share.
 Dr. Geoffrey Guy, chairman and chief executive of Ethical Holdings said: "These results are in line with expectations for the first quarter".
 In the first quarter two more products were launched by the company's licensees. The first launch of once daily Diltiazem Multipor (R) was made in Denmark at the beginning of November with Novo-Nordisk Farmaka Denmark AF as marketing partner. The company's Morphine Rhotard (R) product was launched in Sweden at the end of the period and is being marketed by Nycomed Pharma AS.
 Continued Successful Clinical Development
 Several projects reached notable milestones during the quarter. Dr. Guy commented that: "The advances made in clinical research over this quarter underpin our continued progress in meeting contract milestones".
 The combination estradiol/progestogen Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) patch incorporating a major European pharmaceutical company's proprietary progestogen successfully entered Phase II clinical trials triggering a substantial milestone payment.
 The company's steroid hormone patch for the treatment of pre- menstrual tension and osteoporosis in its first Phase I study yielded plasma concentrations in the desired range. Further Phase I clinical work is underway to optimize dosage regime for a seven day patch. The company expects to examine licensing opportunities for the product shortly.
 In additional further Phase I clinical work on a transdermal analgesic patch has yielded very satisfactory results. The plasma concentrations of the analgesic from the patch appear broadly equivalent to those obtained via the conventional route.
 The research work on nifedipine during the first quarter produced encouraging new clinical results. The company's commitment to this product remains fully focused on the "AB rated" route, and accordingly, the company has decided not to commence Phase III studies in the USA for an NDA (New Drug Application) program.
 By the end of the quarter, the total number of women scanned since the start of Ethical's osteoporosis screening project in Oxford, England exceeded 3,500. Recruitment for a major Phase III osteoporosis study using one of Ethical's combination HRT patches in a sub-group of these women was completed. Consequently, initial results from the study are now expected in 12 months.
 In September the company made an equity investment in Medi-Ject Corporation of Minneapolis, a private corporation which designs and manufactures needle-free injectors. Currently, there are 20,000 diabetics using the Medi-Ject system in the United States. Ethical has acquired worldwide technology rights to the device and will work closely with Medi-Ject to develop further drug delivery applications for the international pharmaceutical market.
 Commenting on the merger with Gacell which took place on Aug. 31, 1993 Dr. Guy said: "The integration with Gacell has advanced rapidly over the quarter with both operations working closely together. All oral drug delivery technologies have been transferred to Malmo, Sweden, whilst clinical development is centered in Ely (UK)."
 Selected financial data (US GAAP unaudited)
 Periods ended Nov. 30 Three months
 1992 1993 1993
 pnds pnds dlrs
 Licensing and Development Fees 245,059 251,000 372,258
 Royalties and Product Sales 997,973 878,200 1,302,458
 Services 228,613 253,398 375,815
 Total Revenues 1,471,645 1,382,598 2,050,531
 Operating expenses
 Direct costs 420,036 423,026 627,390
 Research, development and
 laboratory expenses 956,349 1,323,700 1,963,179
 Selling, general and
 administrative expenses 585,837 1,030,000 1,527,593
 Total expenses 1,962,222 2,776,726 4,118,162
 Operating profit (490,577) (1,394,128) (2,067,631)
 Interest (net) (2,219) (81,410) (120,739)
 Income from continuing operations
 before taxes (488,358) (1,312,718) (1,946,892)
 Income taxes 43,981 90,000 133,479
 Income from Continuing
 operations (532,339) (1,402,718) (2,080,371)
 Discontinued operation: Income
 (loss) from operations of
 discontinued consulting
 business (after tax) 24,531 0 0
 Net profit/(loss) (507,808) (1,402,718) (2,080,371)
 Pro forma shares 9,364,218 14,094,217 14,094,217
 EPS continuing operations (0.06) (0.10) (0.05)
 EPS total operations (0.05) (0.10) (0.15)
 November 30, 1993
 pnds dlrs
 Working capital 10,706,187 15,428,686
 Total assets 14,043,447 20,238,011
 Long-term obligations 326,804 470,957
 Stockholders' equity 10,673,379 15,381,406
 Exchange rate dlrs/pnds = 1.4831
 -0- 1/14/94
 /CONTACT: Dr. Geoffrey W. Guy, chairman and chief executive officer, or Stephen Breslin, corporate affairs, both of Ethical Holdings plc, 011-44-480-431303/

CO: Ethical Holdings plc ST: IN: MCT SU: ERN

TM -- NY064 -- 2183 01/14/94 17:05 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 14, 1994

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