SOURCE: Crucell N.V.

August 29, 2006 16:10 ET

Berna Biotech Ltd (SWX: BBIN) announces half-year results 2006

LEIDEN, NETHERLANDS -- (MARKET WIRE) -- August 29, 2006 --

Organization

On December 15, 2005, Crucell N.V. launched a Public Exchange Offer to Berna Shareholders. For details see the Offer Prospectus dated December 15, 2005.

Crucell (Euronext, NASDAQ: CRXL; Swiss Exchange: SW CRX) is a biotechnology company focused on developing vaccines and antibodies that prevent and treat infectious diseases, including Ebola, influenza, malaria, West Nile virus and rabies. Crucell's products are based on its PER.C6® production technology. Crucell is headquartered in Leiden, The Netherlands. For more information, please visit www.crucell.com.

The Berna Shareholders' accepted Crucell's offer on the extraordinary Shareholders' meeting on January 11, 2006. After expiration of the acceptance period on February 8, 2006, 96.56% of the Berna Biotech shares have been tendered. On February 22, 2006 was the first trading day of Crucell shares on the SWX Swiss Exchange (SWX: CR). Currently Crucell NV holds more than 98% of the Berna Biotech shares.

Crucell NV will pursue a squeeze-out of the remaining minority shareholdings and to delist Berna Biotech AG in connection therewith.

In January 2006 Kenta AG, Switzerland was founded. Berna Biotech contributed TCHF 5 250 in non-current assets, which represents 36.74% of the share capital. Kenta AG is treated as an investment in an associate and accounted for using the equity method.

In April 2006 the Group sold its shares in the Rhein Biotech GmbH, Germany and in May 2006 the Group sold its shares in the Dr. E. Gräub AG, Switzerland including also the Veterinär AG.

Activities

Total revenue of core business vaccines overall increased by 11% on a comparable basis. Travel vaccines sales increased by 49% driven by the geographic expansion and market share gains in Europe of Epaxal®. The Hep B and pediatric franchise shows a double digit decrease of 20% due to the divestments in 2005.The loss from operations (EBIT) increased significantly due to extraordinary expenses lower gross profit. Loss for the period is 36.3 million CHF. The equity ratio for the equity attributable to equity holders is 68%. Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the period of 149 million CHF.

In March 2006 the Korea Food and Drug Administration (KFDA) has awarded licensure to Quinvaxem™, a fully liquid pentavalent vaccine co-developed with Chiron Corporation and produced in Korea.

In July it has been announced that it has decided to suspend further clinical development of Aerugen®, its vaccine candidate for the prevention of Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients.

It is foreseen before the end of the year that Berna Biotech will have delisted its shares from the SWX Swiss Exchange.

Berna Biotech Ltd (Swiss Exchange: BBIN) develops, produces and markets vaccines and immunotherapeutics for private and public markets world-wide. Headquartered in Berne, Switzerland, with subsidiaries in Europe and Korea, Berna is a fully integrated vaccines company, employing around 700 people. Berna Biotech's range of novel and validated proprietary technology platforms supports a strong product portfolio. The company markets its core vaccine products in the field of hepatitis B/paediatric, respiratory and travel vaccines and has a focused development pipeline. Development is supported through alliances with academic and commercial partners. Further information on Berna: www.bernabiotech.com

Berna Biotech Group

Key Figures

+-------------------------------------------------------------------+
| in CHF '000                       | June 30, 2006 | June 30, 2005 |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
|                                   |               |               |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| Revenue                           |        50 963 |        65 997 |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| Revenue "Core Business Vaccinces" |        41 418 |        37 198 |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
|                                   |               |               |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| Cost of sales                     |       -45 016 |       -45 646 |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| Gross Profit                      |         5 947 |        20 351 |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
|                                   |               |               |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| Loss from operations (EBIT)       |       -33 753 |       -13 916 |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
|                                   |               |               |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| Loss for the period attributable  |       -36 293 |       -11 437 |
| to equity holders                 |               |               |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
|                                   |               |               |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
|                                   |               |               |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| in CHF '000 (except Number of     | June 30, 2006 | Dec. 31, 2005 |
| employees)                        |               |               |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
|                                   |               |               |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| Cash and cash equivalents         |       148 970 |       157 574 |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| Total assets                      |       435 471 |       449 433 |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| Total equity                      |       307 612 |       327 004 |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
|                                   |               |               |
|-----------------------------------+---------------+---------------|
| Number of employees               |           652 |           715 |
+-------------------------------------------------------------------+

The consolidated interim financial statements 2006 are attached, and also available on: www.bernabiotech.com

Copyright © Hugin ASA 2006. All rights reserved.

Contact Information

  • Please address any questions to:
    Crucell N.V.
    Paul Vermeij
    Director Investor Relations and
    Corporate Communications
    Tel. +31 (0)71 524 8718
    p.vermeij@crucell.com