Highlights in 2017

The year 2017 was marked by the launch of the following products:

  • Sporténine® in 33 tablet format in France,
  • Children’s Stodal® Multi-Symptom in Canada,
  • Children’s Stodal® in Spain.

In Russia, the Academy of Science published, in early February 2017, a memorandum calling for homeopathy to be declared "anti-scientific", and a Russian deputy prepared a bill aiming to ban the advertising of homeopathic medicines and to add to products packaging a statement of the absence of any proof of effectiveness. These two endeavors, although subsequently blocked by the lower house of the Russian Federal Assembly (DUMA), undermined market confidence, impacting our business.

In Switzerland, as from August 1, 2017, homeopathy (amongst other therapies) is classed under the same regulatory category as other medical disciplines, enabling it to benefit from reimbursements from the Swiss Compulsory Healthcare Insurance scheme. This decision is expected to give weight to the relevance of homeopathy, once integrated into a country's healthcare system in.

On January 4, 2017, the preparation and distribution site located in the 8th district of Lyon was sold, generating a capital gain of €3,293 thousand. This site was closed in 2014 following the consolidation of the two sites in the Lyon area on the Francheville site.

The deployment of the new organization of sites in France has entered the implementation phase, in total cooperation with the persons concerned and staff representative bodies. The first stage, comprising five preparation department transfers to other sites and one site transfer, was finalized in January 2018. Six people refused the proposed location transfer of their employment contracts. Expenses of €914 (compensation and reassignment support measures) were recorded in 2017, partially offset by a write-back of employee benefit provisions of €447. The impact on group operating income therefore amounted to €467.

The second stage, involving the consolidation of sites at three new locations, and the transfer of two preparation departments, will be carried out over 2018 and 2019.

As part of this new organization, the Levallois site, following its consolidation with the Pantin site, was closed on July 1, 2017 and made available for sale.

On April 7, 2017, BOIRON acquired the entire equity capital of Laboratoire FERRIER, previously held by Laboratoires ARKOPHARMA. The purchase price for the acquisition amounted to €1,826 thousand, in addition to net cash of €1,134 thousand, all financed by shareholders' equity. Laboratoire FERRIER was the subject of a universal transfer of assets and liabilities in favor of BOIRON parent company as from August 1, 2017.

The acquisition of land intended to house the group's future logistics platform in Les Olmes (in the Lyon area) was completed on June 10, 2017 for €2,260 thousand. Groundwork and fencing of the land have begun.

Works to extend the Messimy site are ongoing. 2017 was marked by the commissioning of a new research and control center, and the construction of a production building dedicated to tubes and doses.

On October 18, 2017, BOIRON opened a representative office in Hong-Kong, aiming to develop its business in Asia.

On November 16, 2017, BOIRON acquired the trademarks and patents of Swiss company ALKANTIS attached to its medical device for analgesic, anti-inflammatory and anti-oedematous purposes, ALKANTIS (ICE STERILE), consisting of a sterile cold compress.

The purchase price for this acquisition financed by shareholders' equity amounted to €2,495 thousand. An earnout provision also exists:

  • in 2023, if net sales generated by this product in 2022 exceed €10 million, the earnout amount shall equal 10% of 2022 net sales in excess of €10 million. This amount is capped at €2 million;
  • in 2028, if net sales generated by this product in 2027 exceed €20 million, the earnout amount shall equal 10% of 2027 net sales in excess of €20 million. This amount is capped at €4 million.

In the United States, Amazon acquired Whole Foods Market: these two customers represented 17% of the subsidiary's 2016 sales and almost 19% in 2017.

In Canada, the Supreme Court dismissed the appeal submitted by our Canadian subsidiary against the judgment of the Quebec Court of Appeal dated October 26, 2016 authorizing the initiation of class action proceedings. These proceedings on the merits are ongoing before the Quebec Supreme Court. No amount has been provisioned in relation to this dispute.