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OptiBiotix looking to extend its reach into new application areas

The group’s commercial plans for 2020 are centred on extending its reach into new application areas, including hypertension, immune and cognitive health

OptiBiotix Health PLC -

OptiBiotix Health PLC (LON:OPTI) has revealed it grew sales across all of its divisions in the 13 months to the end of 2019 and said it continued to grow its top-line in the first three months of 2020, as reported earlier this month.

READ OptiBiotix sees partnership agreements deliver strong revenue growth

OptiBiotix, which develops compounds to tackle obesity, high cholesterol and diabetes, said that despite the pressures on the global economy caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, it is still looking to achieve revenue growth and profitability in all three of its divisions in the current fiscal year.

The possibility of a second listing on the NASDAQ exchange is also still on the cards, which will give the company the chance to tap into interest in the human microbiome and reduce the share price volatility caused by the low liquidity associated with its current AIM listing in the UK.

Total sales for the 13-months to December 31, 2019 - the company changed its fiscal year-end in 2019 - were £744,883, up from £541,614 in the 12 months to the end of November 2018, with other income of £617,000, including income resulting from the partial disposal of SkinBioTherapeutics PLC (LON:SBTX) shares as previously reported.

In line with previous years, the majority of income was generated in the second half of the year and this trend is expected to continue in 2020 with a gradual smoothing in the second half as income from ingredient, white-label and own-label products sold through retailers or direct to consumers online, provide more evenly distributed income throughout the year.

The loss before tax was £2.24mln, compared to £1.95mln in the previous reporting period, largely as a result of administrative expenses rising to £2.6mln from £1.9mln the year before.

At the end of 2019, the group had £455,608 cash in the bank. Once research & development tax credits of £190,435) and recoverable VAT of £59,345) are added back, the balance was £705,388.

In mid-April of this year, the group raised £1.0mln through the issue of 2.5mln shares, leaving the company confident it has sufficient cash to cover the delivery of existing commercial plans.

The group’s commercial plans for 2020 are centred on extending its reach into new application areas, including hypertension, immune and cognitive health, continuing to enter new territories, and supporting established partners such as Agropur in the USA, AlfaSigma in Italy, and Akums in India, in the commercialisation of products in their territories.

"OptiBiotix has made significant progress in the last 12 months growing sales across all divisions, signing 24 new agreements and extending our reach into 46 countries. OptiBiotix’s products are now being commercialised as food ingredients, medical devices, drug biotherapeutics and supplements in more and more countries across the world helping to build brand presence,” Stephen O’Hara, the chief executive officer of OptiBiotix said in the results statement.

“The progress made in 2019 has continued into the first three months of 2020 with sales of LPLDL and SlimBiome as ingredient or final product increasing by 928% when compared to the same period last year and extending geographic reach and brand presence into 119 countries.

“Despite challenges facing the global economy caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we remain focused on the next phase of our strategy, driving our divisions to profitability in the current year. This is not just about continuing to grow sales, but also about managing costs, renegotiating contracts as volumes increase, reducing the cost of goods to OptiBiotix, and focusing on higher margin products,” he added.

Stephen Prescott, the chief of the ProBiotix Heath Ltd business will leave the company by mutual consent at the end of this month, the group also revealed.

Quick facts: OptiBiotix Health PLC

Price: 50 GBX

AIM:OPTI
Market: AIM
Market Cap: £43.97 m
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