Norbrook profits fall to £4.5M after difficult year

Peter Bayne

Reporter:

Peter Bayne

Email:

peter.bayne@newrydemocrat.com

NEWRY based Norbrook Holdings Ltd announced its results for the year to 31st July 2020 which show Revenue of £212 million, down 11% year-on-year (CER:-12%), generating Operating Profit of £4.5 million.

The Company’s output and performance in the first half of 2020 was constrained by a number of manufacturing and supply chain issues which arose in 2019.

These issues continued to adversely affect the Company’s ability to supply to the market in the early portion of the financial year.

Although this situation was largely rectified by the end of the year, the consequent disruption and impacts from COVID-19 resulted in Operating Profit decreasing to £4.5m compared to £11.0m in 2019.

The animal health industry worldwide continues to grow despite the global pandemic and with continued capital investment, strong demand for our broad portfolio of product and a diverse new product pipeline, we are confident of a strong 2021 and beyond.

The Company has continued to invest in the future of the business, with capital investment of £11 million in 2020, representing 5% of revenue, bringing the total invested in the last four years to £63 million.

New Product Development continues to be a key focus for the business, and is the driver of a strong pipeline of products. Despite a difficult trading year, the Company invested £11m on Research and Development, in line with the previous two years.

A number of products were brought to market in the last year, the most significant of which was Cefenil® RTU Injection for the US Farm Animal market. As this was launched in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic the commercial team had to overcome a number of practical obstacles, principal of which was the inability to have face-to-face meetings with customers.

Despite the operating challenges which the business faced in the first half of the year, progress continued to be made in the US market, where turnover was up 6% on 2019 and Companion Animal sales up 31% on prior year.

Liam Nagle, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer, Norbrook said, “It was anticipated that some of the manufacturing and supply issues which we experienced in the second half of 2019, would persist into 2020. By the second half of the year the majority of these had been resolved, and by the year end the business had returned to normalised levels of output and supply.”

“As with all businesses, the coronavirus has presented a number of significant issues for us to deal with, primarily around employee welfare, customer demand, and operational challenges. In early March 2020, the Company set up a cross-functional task force which met daily during the first four months, and which now meets three times each week. This taskforce has implemented a wide range of measures to mitigate the effect on employees of COVID-19. While doing this, we have been able to maintain significant levels of output, and maintain good, albeit remote, communications with our Customers.”

“Norbrook continues to invest heavily in R&D, and we are confident in the strong pipeline of products anticipated to launch over the coming years.”

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