viewClinigen Group PLC

AIM billionaire Clinigen is still growing at a rate of knots


  • £1bn global pharmaceutical and services company

  • Shipped 4mln units across 130 countries

  • More than 6,000 pharmacists and 250 pharmaceutical company partnerships

  • Financially, primed for another strong year

tablets and pills

Quick facts: Clinigen Group PLC

Price: 865.5 GBX

Market: AIM
Market Cap: £1.15 billion

We have grown through a combination of transformative acquisitions and organic growth to create an international platform which is now taking shape and supporting synergistic growth. This year's performance reflects the results of this strategy.

Shaun Chilton, chief executive


What it does 

Clinigen Group PLC (LON:CLIN) is a billion-pound specialty pharma and services group.

Having listed on London’s junior market back in 2012 with a market cap of just £123mln, it is now the market leader in the supply of drugs for clinical trials and the distribution of unlicensed pharmaceuticals.

In terms of unlicensed pharmaceuticals, Clinigen’s Global Access division sources medicines for pharmacists where supply isn’t necessarily straightforward.

It counts most of the world’s top 25 pharma companies as its customers and has exclusive supply arrangements for more than 100 drugs.

Clinigen doesn’t just ferry other companies’ drugs around the globe, it also uses that supply chain to sell specialty drugs which it has acquired along the way.

In recent years it has spent tens of millions building up its portfolio, which includes a cancer drug formerly owned Novartis and the global rights to Horizon Pharma’s rare disease therapy, Imukin.

One recent addition to the portfolio was metastatic melanoma drug Proleukin, acquired in April, which is looking like a catalyst for growth after promising data from phase 2 trials that tested it in combination with a new drug being developed by another pharma company, Iovance Biotherapeutics.

Broker Liberum was buoyed by the news, saying that this could ultimately “help to drive sales over the mid-term”.


How is it doing?

It kicked off its full-year results by stating its international platform was taking shape to support higher organic growth.

Profits, meanwhile, have advanced by a third in the last year.

The pharma group said its latest acquisition, CMS, for which it paid £193mln, is performing ahead of expectations, while the company set new financial targets.

Future adjusted gross profits are expected to expand by at least 5-10% annually, Clinigen said, with 2020 expected to be “towards the upper end of guidance”.

Commercial “headwinds” affected anti-viral product Foscavir and the UK Specials business, but these were expected.

In the 12 months to June 30, Clinigen’s gross profit was up 30% at £182.3mln, while revenues were ahead 20% at £456.9mln. Underlying earnings (EBITDA) jumped up 33% at £100.8mln.

Investors will receive a 6.7p dividend, up 20% on a year ago. Net debt at the period-end was of £252.4mln.

Chief executive Shaun Chilton pointed out the company has grown by a compound annual 22% since IPO exactly seven years ago.

“We have grown through a combination of transformative acquisitions and organic growth to create an international platform which is now taking shape and supporting synergistic growth. This year's performance reflects the results of this strategy,” he added.

Operationally, the business is performing well. Its portfolio strategy is working effectively, “reflecting a more balanced and diversified business, minimising key risks and synergies building between operations”.

Recent acquisitions CSM and iQone, meanwhile, are largely integrated.

The commercial medicines business has been “enhanced” by the acquisition of the global rights to products such as Proleukin, for kidney cancer.

"We have experienced some headwinds in the year, such as competitive pressure around Foscavir and the UK Specials business; however these were expected,” said CEO Chilton.

“The solid performance of the rest of the business validates our continued strategy of developing a complementary portfolio of products, services and business, enabling us to diversify our profit streams and encourage synergies.”


Looking ahead

  • The company said trading in the current financial year had been “strong” and in-line with expectations.
  • Organic EBITDA growth is expected to exceed the increase in gross profit.
  • Finally, Clinigen told investors it is “well placed to capitalise on the substantial opportunity in its markets”.

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