Lotus upgrades facility
Generic drugmaker Lotus Pharmaceuticals Co (美時化學製藥) yesterday announced that it has begun upgrading its manufacturing facility in Nantou County to expand the production of oral oncology products. The upgrade is expected to be completed in five years and cost tens of millions of US dollars, the company said, adding that its board has approved capital expenditure of US$11 million for this year. The Nantou site has been audited by local, US, EU and Japanese regulatory authorities, enabling it to manufacture products for nearly every market in the world, the firm said. In addition to standard solid oral dose manufacturing, the company can produce hormonal products, soft gelatin capsules, and cytotoxic and high-potency molecules, it said.
Health2Sync launches app
Taipei-based Health2Sync (慧康生活科技) yesterday launched HealthPass, an app that grants its users full control of their health data using blockchain technology. The start-up teamed up with Bitmark Inc, a Taipei-based blockchain developer, to register users’ health data as their personal digital property. Users would be able to selectively allow certain companies and services to access their health data as part of a monetization scheme. The start-up has also tapped CTBC Bank (中信銀行) to use the lender’s blockchain-based solution to enable transactions resulting from monetization. With the help of health data analysis, insurers would be able to create tailored products based on each user’s health, the firm said.
Pharmally sales up 20.27%
Pharmally International Holding Co (康友製藥), a maker of large-volume parenteral solutions for vaccines and intravenous medicines, yesterday announced that net income last year rose 17.44 percent year-on-year to NT$1.1 billion (US$35.59 million), or earnings per share of NT$14.29, while sales rose 20.27 percent to NT$5.18 billion. Pharmally shares closed unchanged at NT$214 in Taipei trading yesterday. The shares last year saw a spike in volatility, surging to more than NT$500 on progress made at its Indonesian poultry vaccine production plant, before falling below NT$140 after a filing revealed that company officials were trimming their holdings.
Pegatron revenue slumps
Pegatron Corp (和碩) on Monday reported that revenue last month dropped 33.4 percent month-on-month, but rose 6.2 percent year-on-year to NT$81.65 billion. Revenue in the first two months rose 3.2 percent year-on-year to NT$204.28 billion, it said. The Jakarta Post reported that Pegatron’s new plant in Indonesia is expected to begin operations next month. Separately, Lite-On Technology Corp (光寶科技) on Monday reported that revenue last month declined 30.33 percent month-on-month and 16.6 percent year-on-year to NT$10.87 billion. Revenue in the first two months also fell 10.36 percent to NT$26.48 billion.
Chungwa Picture shares fall
A plan to lay off 2,500 employees sent shares in Chunghwa Picture Tubes Ltd (華映) into a tailspin yesterday, dealers said. The heavy selling emerged after the Taiwan Stock Exchange said that the financially troubled panel maker, which has filed for bankruptcy protection, would have to delist regardless of whether the restructuring plan is approved by the courts. Shares fell by the daily limit of 10 percent to close at NT$0.54.
Luxury hotel Mandarin Oriental Taipei (文華東方酒店) plans to reopen its guestrooms in December to take advantage of a boom in domestic travel. The reopening would come six months after the five-star facility suspended room operations to cut costs as countries across the region impose border controls to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, diminishing demand for business travel. “We are delighted to share that Mandarin Oriental Taipei will resume room operations on December 1,” the hotel said in a statement yesterday. The hotel in Songshan District (松山) said it would adopt stringent health and safety practices to ensure the well-being of its guests and employees. It
HSBC Bank (Taiwan) Ltd (匯豐台灣商銀) has approved two sustainability-linked loans totaling NT$450 million (US$15.55 million) for Taya Group (大亞集團) and Sinbon Electronics Co (信邦電子), the bank said yesterday, adding that interest rates would fall if the borrowers’ sustainability performance improves. Those marked the first sustainability-linked loans granted by HSBC Taiwan, it said. While HSBC Taiwan has experience providing green loans for the nation’s developers of renewable energy sources to support their projects, the bank began focusing on sustainability-linked loans to meet rising demand from companies in other sectors planning to undertake sustainability programs, it said. “As we reward our clients who reach their
‘NEW TRAVEL MARKET’: The carrier initially planned to lay off about 8,000 people globally, but after government intervention reduced that to 18 percent of its workforce Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd (國泰航空) would cut 6,000 jobs and close its Cathay Dragon brand, the South China Morning Post reported, as part of a strategic review to combat the unprecedented damage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Hong Kong-based airline is expected to officially announce the plan after the market close today, the newspaper said. It initially planned about 8,000 layoffs globally, but after government intervention reduced that to 18 percent of its total workforce, including about 5,000 jobs in Hong Kong, it said. The company, which posted a HK$9.9 billion (US$1.3 billion) loss in the first half, has for months
LEANNESS-ENHANCING DRUG: Assigning a commodity classification to meat containing ractopamine could come under scrutiny by the WTO, the economic affairs minister said Minister of Economic Affairs Wang Mei-hua (王美花) yesterday rejected opposition lawmakers’ calls to assign a product code for US pork and beef containing ractopamine. Facing a barrage of questions from lawmakers at a meeting of the legislature’s Economics Committee, Wang said that giving meat containing residues of ractopamine a commodity classification code would sow confusion and could come under scrutiny by the WTO. “Ractopamine is not a [meat] product, it is an additive,” said Wang, when questioned by Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) Legislator Chiu Chen-yuan (邱臣遠). “If we had a serial code for every additive it would cause confusion. There is