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UCB products are delivering value to patients

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    All of us at UCB are committed to delivering value. That means value to patients whose lives are improved by our medicines; and that will lead to value for shareholders.

    After a busy good year – and a hectic few weeks preparing this report (next to some "other" news items like an approval in the US for our new epilepsy drug and positive phase 3 results for our new osteoporosis drug - can't ask for more) – we are delighted to be able to share with you the details of our 2015 financial results and the financial outlook for 2016. I believe it contains many examples of the value that our company provides.

    Upon reading the report, it is clear that our innovative products are driving growth and delivering strong earnings. We also believe that, thanks to recent regulatory approvals in Europe and the US, and a strong research pipeline, the future is looking bright.

    Let’s start with some of the key figures from the report. Revenue for 2015 was €3.88 billion which was 16% higher than the previous year. Net sales were €3.51 billion, up 20% on 2014.

    2015 saw underlying profitability (recurring EBITDA) 35% higher than the previous year. This was due to higher revenue and a lower operating expenses ratio.

    Profit for the Group was €674 million – compared to €199 million in 2014 – and includes the gain arising from the sale of Kremers Urban. €623 million (after €209 million) of this profit for the group is attributable to UCB shareholders. Core earnings per share was €2.17 while gross dividend per share is proposed at €1.10.

    The financial outlook for 2016 is for further revenue growth. Revenue is expected to be between €4.0 and €4.1 billion, recurring EBITA of between €970 million and €1010 million, and core EPS in the range of €2.90 and €3.20.

    Next week we will be in London and are looking forward to our continued dialog with our shareholders and investors. This will be followed by meetings and conferences in Paris and Brussels later in March.

    An analyst recently told me that for him every year, our FY results event is the kick-off for spring. I like this! As a gardener, I can tell: can't wait to go through the garden gate.

    If you have a comment or question on our 2015 financial results, please let me know – love to hear from you – including exchanging ideas on how to banish my "tenant" in the garden: a family of root voles. I appreciate your advice: Antje.Witte@ucb.com.

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