Lonza strengthens its investment budget to capitalize on the biotechnology boom
Radvance on investments
ZURICH, October 12 (Reuters) – Swiss contract drug maker Lonza LONN.S Is stimulate investment in production sites over the next few years, focusing on the growth of new mRNA vaccines and medical advances against diseases such as COVID-19 and cancer.
The company reaffirmed that capital spending this year will reach around 25% of sales, or more than one billion Swiss francs ($ 1.1 billion), from 16.5% in 2019, adding that it “will remain high. at current levels for the next few years. years “.
It is only in 2025 that the rate of investment to sales will return to a “high” percentage, he added.
“Lonza is accelerating its risk-free long-term investment program to ensure it can capture growing market demand and capitalize on future opportunities,” shelp the company, which is hosting a capital markets day on Tuesday.
Drivers of growth include bioengineered living cell therapies, cell and gene therapy, and anti-cancer drugs called ADCs that combine antibody proteins with chemotherapy chemicals, he said. .
Its fastest growing site is in Visp, Switzerland, where Lonza is investing to produce mRNA vaccines for Moderna.MRNA.O, among other projects.
Sales would increase by a percentage of “weak teens” per year through 2024, adjusted for currency fluctuations. He previously forecast double-digit sales growth through 2023.
Lonza, whose clients include biotechnology company Genmab GMAB.CO, the pharmaceutical giants Roche ROG.S and AstraZeneca AZN.L, said he still aims for a mid-term adjusted profit before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) margin on sales of 33% to 35%. The margin was 33.4% last year.
In itspresentation of the capital markets day published on its website, the group also said he plans to continue paying a dividend of 25 to 40% of net income. It did not experience any extraordinary return of capital after a major divestment in July.
($ 1 = 0.9278 Swiss francs)
(Reporting by Michael Shields and Ludwig Burger, editing by Ed Osmond)
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