Vita 34 manages crisis environment well with a strong third quarter
- Revenues after nine months of EUR 15.0 million almost at previous year's level
- EBITDA margin of 29.1 percent despite increased marketing expenses, close to the target of 30 percent
- Increased demand for new PUR price model leads to steady increase in recurring sales
Leipzig, 12 November 2020 - Vita 34 AG (ISIN: DE000A0BL849; WKN: A0BL84), one of the largest cell banks in Europe, continues to perform very well in the economic environment shaped by the COVID 19 pandemic. In particular, strong growth in new business in the core market Germany led to a return to the growth path and a significant improvement in sales development compared to the second quarter. Even year-on-year, the slightly weaker start to 2020 was almost completely made up for by the end of the third quarter. For the year-end business there are also signs of a consistently positive business performance without any major pandemic effects.
At EUR 15.0 million, revenues for the first nine months were only 0.6 percent down on the previous year (9M 2019: EUR 15.1 million). Demand for the new PUR price model increased significantly, as the company has also been offering the storage of umbilical cord tissue via this contractual model since April 2020. Since then, the proportion of contracts concluded with tissue storage has increased significantly, resulting in an increase in sales per contract. The product, which is designed as an annual payer model, thus has an additional positive effect on the cash flow from storage fees. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) were only 3.8 percent lower at EUR 4.4 million (9M 2019: EUR 4.5 million), although the company continued to invest heavily in marketing measures. First and foremost, the company intensified its efforts to address gynecologists and midwives as two of its most important target groups and further pushed the online marketing of its products. Accordingly, the EBITDA margin remained at a high level of 29.1, close to the target margin of 30 percent.
"We can be very satisfied with the course of the third quarter, as the increased demand for our PUR product is leading above all to rising recurring revenues," explains Dr. Wolfgang Knirsch, CEO of Vita 34 AG. "Although this means that cash flows from our new business are also shifting into the future, it also promotes our future business development. This is a highly desirable development for us, even if it is reflected in a declining operating cash flow in the short term."
The key figures on business development are as follows:
|in EUR '000
|EBITDA margin [%]
|Earnings per share
|Operating cash flow
|Cash & cash equivalents
(vs. year-end 2019)
The Management Board continues to assess the impact of the COVID 19 pandemic on the course of business as low overall. Although a regional analysis still shows that the southern European countries, which are more severely affected by the pandemic, are lagging behind expectations in terms of the number of storages. In the core markets of the DACH region, however, business development continues to be solid and at best with very little impact from the pandemic. Nevertheless, the company has taken precautions for a possible worsening of the situation in the course of a second wave of the pandemic and is maintaining a high level of inventories of production-related precursors. Despite the resulting further increase in working capital requirements, cash and cash equivalents increased further and amounted to EUR 10.5 million at the end of September (31.12.2019: EUR 9.1 million).
The development of new future and development projects, such as the storage of immune cells from peripheral blood of adults and the storage of fat cells for use in aesthetic medicine ("AdipoVita"), is progressing according to plan despite pandemic-related restrictions. For AdipoVita, the company recently received the manufacturing license for the Leipzig site and is now establishing distribution partnerships.
"Against the background of the course of business to date and the current order situation for the fourth quarter, we continue to feel very comfortable with our guidance for the year as a whole and are reiterating it accordingly," commented Falk Neukirch, CFO of Vita 34. "Given the long lead times between the conclusion of contracts and the realization of sales, we also do not expect a second wave of the pandemic to have any negative impact here."
For the full year 2020, the Managhement Board therefore continues to expect revenues of between EUR 19.0 and 21.0 million and EBITDA of between EUR 4.8 and 5.8 million.
Vita 34 AG
Phone: +49 (0341) 48792 - 0
Mobile: +49 (0174) 9091190
Vita 34 was founded in Leipzig in 1997 and is today one of the leading cell banks in Europe. As the first private umbilical cord blood bank in Europe and a pioneer in cell banking, the company has been offering collection logistics, preparation and storage of stem cells from umbilical cord blood and umbilical cord tissue as a full-service provider for cryopreservation ever since. Based on the expansion of the business model in 2019, Vita 34 also intends to offer the storage of immune cells from peripheral blood and stem cells from the body's own fat in the future. The body's own cells are a valuable starting material for medical cell therapy and are kept alive at temperatures around minus 200 degrees Celsius so that they can be used for treatment if necessary. More than 237,000 customers from more than 20 countries have already provided for the health of their families with a cell depot at Vita 34.
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