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Profit at Lonza takes a hefty fall

Swiss drug industry supplier Lonza reports that its first-half net profit plummeted by more than 50 per cent compared with the same period last year.

This content was published on July 22, 2009 - 09:31

The company said in a statement on Wednesday that profit had fallen from SFr267 million ($250 million) to SFr118 million.

However, Basel-based Lonza pointed out that last year's figure took into account a one-off gain of SFr91 million ($85.23 million) from the sale of its remaining stake in the Polynt company of Italy.

On a comparable basis, the first-half net profit was down 32.9 per cent. Sales for the first six months were down 9.2 per cent to SFr1.33 billion.

Lonza, which has moved away from specialty chemicals to higher-margin pharmaceutical ingredients, has been hit by the recession and the start-up costs of new plants, but the figures came more or less in line with analysts' forecasts.

In its outlook, Lonza said all its strategic projects were "on track". The company said it continued to drive growth initiatives through strategic investments and organic growth projects.

swissinfo.ch with agencies

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