- Iron deficiency focused Shield Therapeutics swung to a first-half profit after it posted a large jump in revenue.

Pre-tax profit for the six months through June amounted to £2.7m, compared to losses of £4.7m on-year.

Revenue rose to £8.9m, up from £0.43m, following an upfront payment from ASK Pharm on entering into a license agreement for the company's Feraccru production in China.

The remaining £0.2m arose from royalties under an existing agreement with Norgine.

Shield Therapeutics said it expected Feraccru sales in the UK and Germany to continue to grow during the second half of 2020 and 2021, with royalties flowing from that growth.

'However, launches in the other major European markets are not expected until late 2021 as pricing and reimbursement negotiations in those countries can take 12 to 18 months,' it added.

'Selling, general and administrative costs, meanwhile, would continue at levels seen during 2019 and the first half, while R&D expenditure for the year would rise as paediatric study got underway.

'Overall, the group's cash runway extends into the first quarter of 2021 without including potential upfronts from any out-licensing agreements or other sources of financing as outlined above,' Shield Therapeutics said.

'In the event that any such agreements are concluded, the group would expect them to include upfront receipts which would extend the cash runway.'

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