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Why we have built our future on creating sustainable value for all stakeholders

Picture of author Antje Witte
Posted by
Antje Witte, Investor Relations

The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us that life is what happens. Success requires us to reflect on the trends surrounding us and be ready to act. 

The focus on agility – together with our partnerships – was the key theme running through our presentation at the 40th annual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference, which ran from January 10-13. Usually held in San Francisco – but, in response to the pandemic, held virtually this year – the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference is the kick-off for the new year in our investor communications.

A clear strategic growth path towards and beyond 2025
Currently, trends in healthcare, policy trends, ESG (Environment, Social and Governance) standards and digital disruption are only adding to the impact of the pandemic. We believe our sustainable patient value strategy supports us well to navigate these challenges in the ecosystem and deliver value for all stakeholders.

A successful future has to deliver value for all: people living with severe diseases, colleagues and communities, the planet and our shareholders. After all, we don’t want to create value for patients at the expense of others.

Our financial guidance 2025 reflects this approach. For 2025, we aim to lead in five specific patient populations and deliver at least €6 billion in revenue. We’re also aiming to continue to improve our ESG rating, having already made sustainability an integrated part of our business approach.

Building on a solid foundation
Our future is built on a strong foundation of values, people, focus, a sense of urgency and business acumen. We are a leader in epilepsy; we have a robust product portfolio as well as strong financials and strategic flexibility of our balance sheet, along with a promising late-stage clinical pipeline. 

We firstly aim to continue to grow our existing medicines that are contributing to company growth and profitability, some of which have been there for 30 years. UCB offers four different treatments options for people living with epilepsy, addressing different patient populations. The success of our product portfolio enables us to act on new opportunities, including investing in next-generation science, like gene therapy. It also gives us room to focus on the promising candidates in our late-stage pipeline.

Preparing for the future
We strive for successful launches as we prepare for the upcoming exclusivity loss of two medicines. The launch of our new product for psoriasis promises to be a highlight for 2022; I believe it has the potential to transform the lives of so many people while changing our company too. It’s already available for patients in the EU and the UK, and while the pandemic may have delayed approval in the US, we’re hoping that we can launch in the US during 2022. 

In addition to this exciting new product, we managed – despite the pandemic – six Phase 3 trials in parallel during 2020 and 2021. Three of them read out just recently, with the other three expected in the coming weeks. Out of the six Phase 3 studies reading out ‘as we speak’, two address people living with Myasthenia Gravis, a rare neurological disease. We aim to offer these patients different options to treat the disease. 

Working together for sustainable success
If there was one thing that 2021 taught me, it’s that you can only win standing together. 

We recognise our expertise and our limitations: we have great science, experience and expertise, but, in certain cases, we might be stronger with partners. We partner with Roche/Genentech to bring a promising potential Alzheimer Disease treatment option to patients, and with partner Novartis, a treatment option that has the potential to modify Parkinson’s Disease. 

And with digital business transformation essential to the healthcare of the future, we partner with Microsoft to accelerate our science and deliver new R&D candidates in shorter times. We can complete computations that previously took months in days within this Microsoft partnership.
I’m impressed by our achievements and excited about the future. We are delivering, with peak sales for core products and Phase 3 results for pipeline assets. We are tracking towards successful launches set to amplify impact by 2025. We have strong R&D, great partnerships, solid financials and strategic flexibility for 2025 and beyond. With our continued focus on what matters to patients, we’re confident in creating sustainable value for all stakeholders now and into the future. 

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