Millipore Q1 revs up 14% on pharma spending

By Gareth Macdonald

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags U.s. securities and exchange commission

Millipore says that rebounding Big Pharma spending and biotechnology drove first-quarter 2010 gains.

The US processing technology supplier posted operating profit of $88.1m for the three months ended April 3, up 23.6 per cent on the year-earlier quarter.

 

Total revenue for the period also increased, growing 14 per cent to $463m as a result of double digit growth of Millipore’s core industrial bio-processing and bioscience business units in North America and Asia.

 

Millipore said that first-quarter bioprocess sales, which increased 15 per cent to $204.7m, had been driven by “strong demand​” from customers in the biotechnology industry for production platforms.

 

In contrast, the firm said its bioscience division, whose contribution increased 12 per cent to $258.3m, was helped by a rebound in spending by large pharmaceutical customers and increased laboratory instrumentation sales.

 

This pattern of revenue growth continues that reported for the final three months of 2009, where Millipore said that demand for downstream processing technologies from vaccine makers was the key growth driver.

 

The other growth driver according to CEO Martin Madaus was Millipore’s investment in R&D which he said had enabled the company to “fundamentally increase the growth profile of our business​.”

 

During the first quarter, we increased our R&D spending by 19 percent and advanced key collaborations with technology partners, which will help to drive long-term revenue growth​.”

 

This approach recently​ saw Millipore partner with contract manufacturing organisation (CMO) EdenBiodesign to expand its cell line development offering and further diversify its bioprocessing unit.

 

SEC OKs Merck deal

 

Millipore's Q1 performance will be welcomed by German drugmaker Merck KGaA whose proposed billion dollar​ takeover is on track to take place next month after the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) gave the deal a green light.

 

Merck will be particularly pleased by the bioprocessing gains as this part of Millipore's business was cited as a key motivation for the proposed acquisition by company chairman Karl-Ludwig Kley

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