CHA Biotech said in a public filing on Wednesday that it recorded 124.4 billion won ($104.6 million) sales, 730 million won operating profit, and 3.4 billion won net profit in the first quarter.
Compared to a year earlier, the sales grew 12.6 percent, but operating profit and net profit plummeted 92.3 percent and 34.6 percent, respectively.
The company attributed a steep drop in operating income to “a temporary cost increase incurred by an expansion of medical network overseas.” However, the total revenue went up because the sales from overseas medical network steadily rose, it added.
CHA Biotech said it would achieve faster growth in the overseas market while focusing on R&D in Korea without any burden on sales on the back of the exception policy for listed pharmaceutical firms.
In February, the company acquired Singapore Medical Group, a listed firm in the Southeast Asian city-state, through its subsidiary CHA Healthcare. It also secured a global medical network with over 50 hospitals and clinics in seven countries, including the U.S., Japan and Australia.
In the R&D area, the company is conducting seven clinical trials to commercialize drugs for various rare diseases such as Starkart's disease, age-related macular degeneration, acute stroke, and Alzheimer's disease. It is also working on immunotherapy using natural killer cells.
“We are improving profitability by diversifying the business portfolio in the overseas market. In R&D, we will concentrate our all efforts to accelerate the commercialization of cell therapies,” CEO Oh Sang-hoon said.
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