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Solid Half For Pharmazen, New Director Appointed

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Solid Half For Pharmazen, New Director Appointed

Biotechnology company PharmaZen has announced a solid first half with a profit of $157,000 after interest and depreciation on a turnover of $2.801 million, with further improvement likely over the rest of the year. It is also announcing the appointment of a new director, Dr Wayne Burt.

The half-year result to June 30 is slightly down on the $202,000 profit for the same period in 2008 on a turnover of $3.087 million.

PharmaZen chief executive, Craig McIntosh, said the result has been pleasing given the global economic crisis and the strength of the New Zealand dollar. "Outside of Asia our markets have all held up very well and we are seeing growth in Europe and North America," Mr McIntosh said. "Unfortunately we were caught out on the sudden and sustained rise in the NZ dollar which resulted in FX losses in the first quarter which were ultimately the difference between where we are today and being well ahead on last year. "The positive aspect is that we are clearly able to operate profitably on a high NZD and this profitability will climb with sales growth," he said. Considerable effort continued to go into the development of new products and markets and PharmaZen remained very positive about the opportunities for future growth off the back of these initiatives, Mr McIntosh said. Dr Burt is a New Zealand expatriate investment banker and company director who splits his time between Europe and Australasia. He is Principal of Lotus Capital International Limited, a European based private equity investment firm founded in 1994.

Before founding Lotus Capital Dr Burt had eleven years' investment banking experience at senior levels in Australia. Lotus Capital has been involved in the creation of several new business ventures that have achieved substantial listed market capitalisations. It was the largest of the independent shareholders of Pharmazen at the time of listing and has recently added several million more shares to its holding which, at 18.5 million shares, represents around 11.5% of the company's capital. PharmaZen trading division Waitaki Biosciences International in Christchurch manufactures a range of powder products extracted from a wide range of animal and marine sources. The range includes green-lipped mussel, shark cartilage, natural calcium and Chondroitin Sulphate. The products are used by other companies as a base for health products, mainly in the areas of bone health, joint health, immune and digestive support as well as hair care and cosmetic applications.

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