Instem encouraged by buoyant R&D market in life sciences sector

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Instem PLC (LON:INS) has said it traded in line with the board’s expectations in 2020, despite the wider market impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The provider of information solutions to the global life sciences market saw revenues grow by more than 11% year-on-year in 2020, with recurring revenues growing strongly as the company makes the transition to software-as-a-service (SaaS) model.

All three areas of its business – Study Management, Regulatory Solutions and Informatics – performed well, the company said in a trading update, with an “excellent first full-year contribution” to the Informatics area from the November 2019 acquisition of Leadscope.

“The company’s proven platform and continued strong growth trajectory underpins management’s confidence in the current year,” the company added.

Organic growth opportunities remain, especially within SEND (Standard for Exchange of Non-clinical Data) exploitation, as customers look to leverage their valuable historic studies for more efficient and effective research.

The company ended the year with net cash of £26.7mln and sai it remains in active discussions with a number of acquisition targets.

“We are extremely pleased with the company’s performance – especially given the backdrop of COVID-19. The strong visibility afforded to us by a buoyant life sciences R&D market and our established business model means that we are well-positioned going forward,” said Phil Reason, the chief executive officer of Instem in the statement.

“Our continued focus remains on organic revenue growth, further margin improvement and accretive M&A, where we are making good progress in negotiations with certain targets,” he added.

Shares in Instem were up 0.5% at 512.5p in early deals.

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