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PharmaZen notches strong increase in tough export market

PharmaZen notches strong increase in tough export market

3 April 2014 – Biotechnology company PharmaZen Ltd has reported a 38% increase in its annual surplus before tax of $739,114 for the year ended December 31, 2013, despite a challenging environment for exporters.

The result was on turnover of $6,998,599 and compares with a before tax surplus of $537,108 on turnover of $6,685,972 for the previous corresponding period.

Chief executive Craig McIntosh said it was a significant achievement in what was another challenging year for exporters.

He said PharmaZen had set very aggressive timetables for product and capability development as it looked for additional growth areas.

Last year saw the commercial launch of StimuCalä, a clinically proven calcium supplement.

“This is the first time the PharmZen has had branded material in retail markets and it is our first product with patent protection. StimuCalä is the only product on the market clinically proven not to cause spikes in calcium serum levels,” McIntosh said.

During the year, PharmaZen commissioned a state-of-the art fluidised powder blender enabling highly accurate blending at up to 1500kgs per batch.

McIntosh said the unit provided PharmaZen with a significant point of difference over competitors who had smaller, less-accurate ‘homogenizers’ and had already helped secure additional contract business.

After delays caused by a third party, the extraction plant will be commissioned this year and PharmaZen already has customer commitments for use.

“Frustrations that were outside our control with delays to the extraction project have prompted us to switch to a more self sufficient model and we have invested heavily in putting together a pilot plant that will be on a par with the best available in New Zealand,” McIntosh said.

“This provides a significant advantage as we will be able to offer pilot and scale up capacity across a range of technologies which will include spray drying, solvent extraction, freeze drying, and column separation. With this in mind we have bought a new 1000kg freeze dryer to cope with additional volumes and have an option on another larger unit.”

PharmaZen’s traditional freeze drying and vacuum drying technologies will be complemented in 2014 with the installation of a new Spray Dryer which opens up significant new product opportunities, McIntosh said.

“There is no doubt that exchange rates and margins will again prove challenging for 2014. However, through diversification of product range and increased capabilities, PharmaZen is well positioned.”


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