2013 Was Fulfilling Year, Says CEVA CEO

FRANCE - Global veterinary health company, Ceva Sante Animale, which completed its fourth LBO deal on 30 June, published its annual report on the same day. The company's CEO describes 2013 as a "fulfilling year" and warns that 2014 may not be easy.
calendar icon 4 July 2014
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The 2013 annual report is available for the first time on-line annualreport.ceva.com and also includes an economic and social report detailing Ceva's progess towards its 'Together, beyond animal health' mission.

According to the report, in 2013, Ceva maintained its strong growth path, registering six per cent sales growth at a constant perimeter and exchange rates. The operational result continued to progress by nine per cent and profitability ratio increased by one point. The company maintained its strategic focus, with strategic products now representing 64 per cent of revenue.

However, 2013 was a difficult year for Ceva, as it was for all its competitors in the animal health market, the companyy says. As in 2012, the Eurozone remained in regression. The economies of emerging countries had relatively sustained growth, but their currencies were, in general, significantly impacted by between 20 and 30 per cent depreciation. For Ceva, this translated into a shortfall in sales of almost €25 million. Two other unrelated factors had an impact. The long, harsh winter in North America reduced sales of antiparasitics and elsewhere there were new outbreaks of avian flu, which reduced consumption of chicken.

"Our strong overall performance confirms the solidity of our growth model, driven by its twin engines of external and organic growth at the service of our vision: 'Together, we are building a new reference to create value beyond animal health'.”
Marc Prikazsky, CEO of Ceva Santé Animale

In terms of external growth, 2013 was a particularly fulfilling year

The acquisition of Sogeval will help propel Ceva to become a major actor in the companion animal market. Ceva already occupies strong positions in this area, notably in antiparasitics, behaviour and cardiology. Sogeval brings us leadership positions in France in ‘délicaments’ (palatable tablets) and alternative dermatology, as well as complementary expertise in cardiology and pain management. The alliance between Ceva and Sogeval has created a powerful new company with over 3,500 employees and revenue of more than €700 million, close to 90 per cent outside France.

In the field of avian biology, Ceva formed a strategic alliance with Ecat, a specialist in automatisation of hatcheries and in-ovo vaccination equipment. Ceva’s partnership with Ecat enables it to extend its range of services and equipment to poultry customers beyond strict vaccination.

2013 saw Ceva consolidate its breakthrough in China. The population of China consumes twice as much meat as that of the United States, particularly pork and poultry. Aware of the need to develop quality and increase the standard of living of its population, the Chinese government has made animal health one of its development priorities. Against this background, Ceva had a duty to forge partnerships with Chinese companies. This adventure began in 2011, with the creation of the Ceva Huadu joint venture. It continued in 2013 with the signing of three partnerships:

  • In May, Ceva signed a partnership agreement with the University of Canton, to test Vectormune® AI (a product already recognised for its efficacy in the US, Egypt and Bangladesh) against local strains of avian flu, which are causing considerable damage to China’s poultry producers and threatening human health.
  • In July, Ceva teamed up with Sichuan Hengtong Animal Pharmacy, a company based in Sichuan, one of the largest swine producing areas in China, in a partnership agreement to develop pharmaceuticals for pigs and to build a modern plant capable of complying with the strictest quality standards.
  • In September, Ceva signed a licensing and trademark agreement with Jinyu. The aim is to produce vaccines against brucellosis, a dangerous zoonotic disease, which is difficult to identify and eradicate and has its highest worldwide prevalence in Inner Mongolia.

Organic growth plan also saw major advances

Marc Prikazsky

The year was notable for the registration of two major products: Vectra 3D® in Europe and Cevac IBird® across large parts of the world, said Marc Prikazsky, CEO of Ceva Santé Animale.

Vectra 3D is an innovative combination of three ingredient which provides dogs with rapid, efficient protection against mosquitoes, fleas and ticks. Another advantage of the product is that it allows control of the immature stages in the life cycle of fleas (eggs, larvae and pupae). This registration is the fruit of exemplary collaboration between our R&D teams, the regulatory bodies, and our partners – suppliers of ingredients and industrial contract manufacturers – and marks our entry into the largest European animal health market segment.

Cevac IBird® is an innovative vaccine developed by Ceva to prevent avian infectious bronchitis. It follows extensive work spent preparing scientific data that puts us in the position of leader in this field. It can also be administered in the hatchery, guaranteeing more effective protection for production units.

These positive results reflect Ceva's ability to innovate at every level in order to bring its customers more efficient solutions, according to the report.

For several years, Ceva has been committed to improving the health of people through its actions in veterinary medicine: to secure the need for enough, safe animal protein, to protect them from zoonotic diseases and to optimise their relationships with their pets in an increasingly urbanised world. This is what we do, all over the world, says Ceva.

Sales of the vaccine Vectormune® ND, launched in 2012 to protect poultry against Newcastle disease, have grown 2.5 times. The Perfect Pair - a combination of Cevac Transmune IBD and Vectormune ND - continues to be deployed by poultry producers to prevent three major diseases in poultry with a single injection.

In Mexico, the world’s sixth biggest producer of poultry products, Ceva's teams have worked in partnership with local authorities to control a violent outbreak of avian flu H7N3 with our vaccine, Cevac Flu H7 k. In Egypt and Bangladesh, it was against the H5N1 strain of this disease that we acted through the introduction of our Vectormune AI, recognized for its efficacy and registered in the United States. In Africa, a continent undergoing huge demographic expansion which has not yet achieved full food security, the Sympavi symposium brought together poultryprofessionals from Intertropical Africa to convince them of the value of hatchery vaccination.

In the control of zoonoses, Ceva strengthened its presence in China, fighting against brucellosis, and in Hungary against Q fever. In Uganda, for the seventh successive year, the company is pursuing its commitment alongside SOS Uganda to protect livestock and people from trypanosomiasis.

In terms of the companion animal sector, where the benefits of human animal interaction are most clear, the acquisition of Sogeval will give Ceva further ability to develop leadership positions that will benefit both humans and animals.

Mr Prikazsky explains that he cites these examples but he says there are many others he could have mentioned, to underline how Ceva's ‘One Health’ mission is a daily reality, visible to all.

He continued: "I also cite them to show the diversity of our actions is proof of the support Ceva provides to all forms of agriculture: the intensive models, which we need in order to feed the world, but also other minority forms which help protect the diversity of regions and local identities with a different business model.

"It is this desire that lies behind our support and sponsorship of the Fondation du Patrimoine (Heritage Foundation) and, in partnership with this organization, the award of the first Heritage Foundation Prize for Animal Agro-biodiversity at the Paris International Agricultural Show."

2014 will probably not be an easy year

Mr Prikazsky explains that growth is sluggish in Europe.

He added: "It is highly likely that we will once again be confronted with the consequences of a strong Euro and political instability for some time to come. These difficulties and risks are part of our daily lives. But the exceptional results achieved by Turkey and Greece in 2013, in a very difficult environment, show that when Ceva’s teams bring to the fore their talent together with our values – entrepreneurial spirit, innovation and solidarity – we are capable of succeeding and surpassing ourselves.

"This is why I am proud of Ceva and its men and women. This is what makes me confident in the future and gives me the belief that by 2020, we will join the top five global animal health companies."

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