Eco Animal Health (LON:EAH) today revealed a major increase in profits and earnings for the 12 months ended March 31 2012.
The veterinary drug company increased profit 31.8 per cent to 2.6 million from £2 million, while earnings per share rose 41.6 per cent to 4.19p from 2.96. The company ended the year with £9.5 million in net cash and it now plans to up its dividend by 25 per cent to 3.75p.
The company said that the strong start to the second half of the year, revealed in the interims, was maintained. And the group’s fortunes have been boosted further by the US approval of its lead product Aivlosin - a water soluble antibiotic for pigs.
This is expected to have significant impact as it opens the door to a major market but, financially, this boost isn’t likely to start showing on the group’s figures until next year as it will need a little time for the product to build momentum.
“ECO Animal Health Group has delivered another strong set of results for the year ended 31 March 2012 and the current year has started well,” said chairman Peter Lawrence.
“We are confident that the long awaited marketing authorisations in the US and Canada will have a major positive effect on the development of ECO, although it will be some months before the product launches gain momentum. We do not expect a noticeable impact on our financial performance until next year.
“ECO is very well placed to further broaden its product ranges and its global reach will ensure that it capitalises on opportunities as they arise in all the Company’s major markets. The Company is set for an exciting future and looks forward to maximising value for shareholders.”
Robin Campbell, analyst at Merchant Securities, says the group’s sales dynamics in the second half of the year were impressive – it delivered 11 per cent year on year sales growth in the period.
“This accelerating trend is encouraging and was achieved in tough global markets where pricing pressures intensified during the year, reflecting the generally difficult environment.”
The analyst highlights that Eco records strong growth in Latin America and Asia and despite tough conditions in Europe it managed a ‘very encouraging’ growth of more than 30 per cent.