Tuesday 23 October 2018

Venn Life shares slump 17pc on loss and income fall

Irish contract research firm Venn Life Sciences is listed on the Alternative Investment Market of the London Stock Exchange. Photo: Bloomberg
Irish contract research firm Venn Life Sciences is listed on the Alternative Investment Market of the London Stock Exchange. Photo: Bloomberg
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

Shares in AIM-listed clinical research firm Venn Life Sciences were down over 17pc in afternoon trading in Dublin yesterday after it revealed an operating loss of €260,000 for the six months to June 30.

Total income for the period was €7.8m, down from €9.1m in the same period last year. Meanwhile, the company recorded earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation of €200,000, according to a trading update from the group.

The performance was impacted by delayed conversions of client contracts, as well as investment during the period.

"Positively, Venn is developing its reputation in the high-growth, rare disease segment through successful project execution and new client wins," said Davy analyst Andrew Young.

The stockbroker said it would review its forecasts for Venn "in due course".

Venn had cash and cash equivalents of €800,000 as at June 30, 2018, down from €2.9m as at June 30 2017.

"Any services business is dependent upon conversion of opportunity into billable work to maintain the occupancy of its employees and its margins," said chairman Allan Wood.

"Although we have used the flexibility in our resource cost base to mitigate the impact of conversion delays, our profitability has been impacted this period. Consistent with our strategy update earlier this year we continue to evaluate both organic and in-organic growth options as we move forward."

Venn said it was focused on strengthening business-development capabilities with investment in new personnel, lead-generation and increased marketing activities.

Irish Independent

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