Fueled, in part, by the Capsugel acquisition, Lonza posted good gains in the first half and raised expectations for the full year. Organic sales increased 8.2% during the period to CHF3.1 billion. One year after the successful closing of the Capsugel acquisition, sales amounted to CHF 3.1 billion ($3.1 billion) for the half-year 2018; and margins for Lonza further improved, resulting in a CORE EBITDA margin of 26% and a CORE EBIT margin of 20.3%. All figures are in reported currency and compared with the same period in 2017 (restated to reflect adoption of IFRS 15).
"The strong organic sales growth and margin improvements – particularly in our businesses along the healthcare continuum – helped us achieve a positive Half-Year 2018 result, which is why we are updating our outlook for the full year," said Richard Ridinger, CEO of Lonza. "We look back at a successful first year after acquiring Capsugel and see that integration is progressing better than planned, operational and commercial synergies are starting to materialize and healthcare continuum offerings are becoming even stronger."
According to Ridinger, an important part of the successful integration into the Lonza family has been the valuable contribution of Guido Driesen, Capsugel's former CEO, who helped bring together a strong organization.
"With integration progressing so well, he is winding down his activities. We are thankful that Guido is prepared to support us even further with his expertise in other projects globally as needed," said Ridinger.
On a segment level, Lonza Pharma & Biotech contributed significantly to Lonza’s strong H1 2018 performance with 14.7% organic sales growth and a 33.1% CORE EBITDA margin. Pharma & Biotech’s Clinical Development & Manufacturing and Commercial Manufacturing services across all technologies and assets continued to build on buoyant demand for Lonza’s offerings along the entire value chain. Within Lonza’s Specialty Ingredients segment, the newly formed Consumer Health division performed extremely well, driven by robust momentum for nutritional ingredients and supplement delivery forms.
Based on the strong Half-Year 2018 results, Lonza today upgraded its sales outlook for Full-Year 2018 to mid- to high-single-digit growth on a comparable basis. CORE EBITDA margin for Full-Year 2018 is expected to be comparable to the CORE EBITDA margin of 26% for Half-Year 2018.