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BTG surges as it upgrades pharmaceuticals guidance

By Michele Maatouk

Date: Tuesday 13 Nov 2018

BTG surges as it upgrades pharmaceuticals guidance

(Sharecast News) - Shares in BTG surged on Tuesday as the specialist healthcare company posted a rise in interim revenue and upgraded sales guidance for its pharmaceuticals arm - its second guidance upgrade in just over a month.
In the six months to 30 September, adjusted operating profit grew 39% to $178.5m on revenue of $495.7m, up 12% from the same period a year ago. The performance was driven by a 10% increase in product sales to $340.2m, thanks to growth in both interventional oncology and vascular.

In the oncology business, the company said it delivered "very strong" growth from internal radiation therapy TheraSphere, with ongoing market penetration and geographic expansion. BTG's cryoablation products, used mostly in kidney tumours, also delivered continued strong growth in all territories in the last six months.

BTG said it has seen a good start to the second half and confirmed its FY2019 guidance for the interventional oncology and vascular portfolio of 15% to 17% growth a constant exchange rates.

In addition, it upgraded its pharmaceuticals guidance to a low single-digit increase from previous guidance that it would be at the upper end of a flat to single-digit percentage sales decline. It attributed the upgrade to a good first-half performance and very strong October for its CroFab snakebite antivenin.

Meanwhile, the group's effective tax rate was lowed to between 15% and 18% from previous guidance of 18% to 21% due to higher royalties.

Chief executive officer Louise Makin said: "Our growth strategy is delivering. We remain ambitious to use our strong financial resources to augment this positive organic momentum with further investments and acquisitions to deliver on our vision of being a world leader in Interventional Medicine, transforming patient care and creating significant long-term value for our stakeholders."

BTG also announced that as part of a new focus on advancing the treatment of lung cancer it has invested $20m in Veran Medical Technologies, a company that makes electromagnetic navigation systems to aid the early diagnosis and treatment of lung cancer. It has an option to acquire the company, exercisable from January 2020.

At 0945 GMT, the shares were up 10% to 656.75p.

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