Annual General Meeting of UCB Shareholders
Brussels, June 8, 2004 - The Annual General Meeting of UCB shareholders, which was held under the presidency of Mr. Mark Eyskens in Brussels on June 8th, 2004 has approved the 2003 financial statements.
The Group reiterated that it achieved a solid operational performance in 2003, with a net profit reaching € 340 million up 2 % compared to 2002 in real terms and 22 % on a like-for-like basis.
The Annual General Meeting set the distribution of a net dividend of € 0.615 per share compared with a € 0.60 last year, an increase of 2.5 %, to be paid as of June 11th 2004. This return on capital represents 35 % of the Group's profit after tax and is consistent with the percentages of previous years.
The meeting also approved the appointment of Roch Doliveux, as Director of the Board of Directors.
Confirming the Group's outlook for 2004, Georges Jacobs, the Group's Chief Executive Officer, said: "This year again, UCB demonstrated its ability to generate a solid performance, confirming prospects for long term growth and profitability. In 2004, the Group's net profit at constant perimeter should improve as compared to 2003. It is on the basis of those promising perspectives, driven by sound financial results, that we have announced our ambition to create a biopharmaceutical leader, together with UK-based biotech leader Celltech, by combining strengths and sharing our vision for the future .”
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