Contract development and manufacturing organization Samsung Biologics reported a fourth consecutive quarter of strong financial results to wrap up the 2022 fiscal year. Samsung Biologics’ revenue of KRW 965.5 billion ($765 million) and operating profit of KRW 312.8 billion for Q4 2022 brought its fiscal year totals in revenue and operating profits to KRW 3 trillion and 983.6 billion, respectively, both record highs for the fast-growing CDMO.
“Our steady financial performance in the fourth quarter was driven by solid business growth with strong operational excellence and full utilization across all plants, further accelerated by the full inclusion of Samsung Bioepis in 2022,” said John Rim, CEO and president of Samsung Biologics.
Rim went on to explain that the CDMO will look to build on this growth momentum in 2023. “We expect the positive business momentum to continue, with the completion and full operation of Plant 4 and construction of our next facility at Bio Campus 2,” he said. “We will also seek to further expand our portfolio by investing in new modalities to diversify our service offerings, and as the world’s leading CDMO, we will continue to provide quality-driven services and contribute to saving the lives of patients around the globe.”
The fourth quarter was Samsung Biologics’ third quarter of reporting consolidated earnings with Samsung Bioepis, a biosimilars firm it founded as a joint venture with Biogen and fully acquired in April 2022.
Of the KRW 3 trillion total consolidated revenue for 2022, Samsung Biologics contributed KRW 2.44 trillion, a 55% year-over-year increase compared to 2021. The CDMO’s operating profit increased to KRW 968.1 billion, up from KRW 536.5 billion in the previous year.
Samsung Biologics’ revenue for the fourth quarter increased 68% year over year to total KRW 747.7 billion, while its fourth quarter operating profit of KRW 308.5 billion increased 140% from the fourth quarter of 2021.
The CDMO’s net profit for the fourth quarter was KRW 314.1 billion, a substantial increase of KRW 217.1 billion from the fourth quarter of 2021. Samsung Biologics attributed this growth to operational efficiency at its plants and a favorable foreign exchange rate.
Samsung Biologics’ 2022 Recap
Samsung Biologics began 2022 by outlining what Rim called a “multidimensional growth plan” built on three pillars: expanding its industry-leading manufacturing capacity in monoclonal antibodies, diversifying its portfolio, and increasing its global footprint.
The CDMO expanded its capacity by launching partial operations at its newly constructed Plant 4 facility. This facility will be operational at a full capacity of 240,000 liters in 2023, making it the largest biomanufacturing facility in the world. Samsung Biologics will have a total capacity of 604,000 liters when the facility is completed, adding to its position as the global leader in total biomanufacturing capacity.
Portfolio diversification played a significant role in Samsung Biologics’ growth in 2022. The CDMO’s acquisition of Samsung Bioepis marked an increased commitment to the biosimilars market, which Rim expects to grow in upcoming years.
“Health authorities across the globe are recognizing biosimilars as a cost-effective solution that will bring medical products to larger populations and also enable better government spending,” he said in a recent interview.
Samsung Bioepis specializes in oncology and immunology biosimilars, with SB4, a biosimilar to the autoimmune disease therapeutic Enbrel (etanercept), surpassing Enbrel’s sales. In June, Samsung Bioepis launched a biosimilar for the treatment of macular degeneration that’s similar to Lucentis (ranibizumab). The company’s pipeline also includes biosimilars in development for hematology, endocrinology, and gastroenterology.
Samsung Biologics continued its diversification efforts by adding a new end-to-end mRNA vaccine production suite at its Songdo, South Korea, headquarters. The CDMO now has both drug substance and drug product capabilities, providing a one-stop-shop solution that can both produce the mRNA molecules for vaccines, and transfer them to the final drug product for patient use. Samsung Biologics demonstrated the efficiency of this new suite with the successful completion of the first production run of COVID-19 vaccines for GreenLight Biosciences, producing 650 grams of mRNA at a titer of 12 grams per liter only seven months after the initial technology transfer.
The CDMO also launched two new proprietary development platforms in 2022. In November it announced the bispecific antibody platform S-DUAL, as well as DEVELOPICK, a developability assessment platform used for early-stage screening.
Next Steps for the CDMO
2022 was the next step in what has been a rapid expansion for Samsung Biologics since its establishment in 2011. The company has quickly become one of the world’s largest CDMOs, and it will look to continue to build on its growth momentum, according to Rim.
This includes plans to complete construction of Plant 4 by mid-2023, and plans to construct a manufacturing suite for antibody drug conjugates in 2024. The CDMO will also commence construction on its Bio Campus 2 facility after its 2022 purchase of a plot of land in Songdo that is 30% larger than the location of its current Bio Campus.
Most recently, the company announced that it will begin construction of Plant 5 to commence Bio Campus II capacity expansions.
Rim also noted plans to enter into the cell and gene therapy business, as well as plans to launch offices in Boston and New Jersey. The goal, Rim said, is to extend beyond CDMO services and become a global top-tier biopharmaceutical company by 2030.