c-LEcta exceeds EUR 10 million in revenue with significantly higher EBITDA
c-LEcta, a global biotechnology company with technology leadership in enzyme engineering and bioprocess development, managed to successfully continue its growth in the fiscal year 2020 despite a challenging year overall. Revenue increased to EUR 10.4 million, while EBITDA rose sharply to EUR 2.0 million. The continued growth of the product business was an important factor in the continued growth of revenue. The good development in the first quarter of 2021 allows the management to look ahead to the current year with optimism.
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The c-LEcta management team (from left to right Thomas Pfaadt, CFO, Carsten Fietz, Senior Vice President Finance and Administration, Dr. Marc Struhalla, Founder and CEO) Image: c-LEcta
c-LEcta managed to grow strongly once again in 2020. Despite a generally challenging economic environment, revenue in the past fiscal year rose by 14% to EUR 10.4 million. Having reached break-even earlier than planned in 2019, EBITDA rose more strongly than expected from EUR 0.2 million in 2019 to EUR 2.0 million in 2020, with the company’s total operating performance growing by 23% to EUR 11.8 million (2019: EUR 9.6 million).
In this setting, c-Lecta’s product business again proved to be a growth driver. Product revenue increased from EUR 7.2 million in 2019 to EUR 9.1 million in 2020, which represents an increase of 27%. Additional revenue totaling EUR 1.2 million can be attributed to the project business and licenses. This development once again confirms the strategic focus on the production and marketing of the company’s own products. DENARASE was the biggest growth driver in 2020. This enzyme is used in the production of vector-based vaccines, but is also put to use successfully in the future markets of gene and cell therapy. In addition, 2020 saw the launch of the DENARASE ELISA kit, which can be used to determine DENARASE quantities in process solutions. Demand significantly exceeded expectations at the start of sales. These synergy effects are also due to the improved product properties. This development demonstrates the economic potential of product families that meaningfully complement the company’s current products.
“The results really speak for themselves – we continued to show a good growth rate in the pandemic year. Our customers are also feeling the uncertainties and some held back on investments in 2020 – nevertheless, we were able to continue on our course. The revenue mix is shifting further towards products in line with our strategy. This also has an impact on the EBITDA margin, which is generally somewhat stronger in the product business than in the project business,” commented Thomas Pfaadt, CFO of c-LEcta.
c-LEcta is relying on the product business as a basis for its growth in the future, as well. Accordingly, the product portfolio is to be further expanded in order to seize additional opportunities in the future. The next product launch is already scheduled for the second half of the year. “The product business has become a real success story for us, that needs to be emphasized quite clearly. We continue to work closely with partners on joint development projects with the goal of successfully marketing our new products together. At the same time, we are investing extensively in our own product development programs. An increasingly diversified product portfolio also allows us to balance risks and address multiple target markets, both geographically and across different industries,” commented Marc Struhalla, founder and CEO of c-LEcta.
c-LEcta is already globally positioned, approx. 95% of the company’s revenue is now generated abroad. In total, c-LEcta now serves over 200 customers in more than 40 countries. The company has concluded supply contracts for enzyme products with many customers in the pharmaceutical sector, and many customers have certified c-LEcta as their supplier. This allows the company to establish long-term customer relationships in future areas such as gene and cell therapy. Besides Europe, North America and Asia in particular play important roles.
Despite the current situation with the coronavirus and the related macroeconomic risks, the management is optimistic for the future and expects strong growth momentum in terms of both revenue and EBITDA in the current fiscal year as well. c-LEcta expects further growth to be based on both the current product portfolio and future products from its own pipeline. The increasing scaling of the product portfolio is expected to result in significant additional revenue growth as well. c-LEcta is also on a growth course in terms of its personnel. The number of employees rose by 23% in the past year and currently stands at 103; the number of employees is expected to continue to increase significantly through the end of 2021.
c-LEcta is a world-leading biotechnology company with a focus on enzyme engineering and application in regulated markets like the food and pharma industries. The company is based in Leipzig, Germany, and has established itself as a leading player in the realization of high-value biotech products, either in the form of in-house developments or in close cooperation with industry. The company currently employs more than 100 people.
c-LEcta delivers cost-efficient and sustainable production processes which open new markets and allow for better penetration of existing markets. The company is characterized by fast and efficient development of best-in-class biotech solutions and a rapid and successful market introduction and commercialization of the resulting products. This enables c-LEcta to leverage the unique potential of its core technologies. c-LEcta has a proven track record of more than ten successfully commercialized high-value industrial biotech products.
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