Invent Medic has started 2022 on the offence, with several new initiatives and focus on increasing sales of the two products in the Efemia family. So far, however, these initiatives have not translated into increased sales, as the sales figures for the first quarter 2022 remained largely unchanged compared to the same period 2021. Looking closer at the numbers, however, the company sees some promising signals, something that BioStock asked about when we contacted CEO Anna Lindström for a comment.
Lund-based Invent Medic has developed a series of products that it markets under the Efemia brand, all of which aim to promote women’s health. Following a strategy update, the company continues the transformation from being primarily a development-focused company to prioritising sales and increasing revenue.
You can read more about the update here.
Several new distribution agreements in place
One important component of that transformation is the build-up of a strong distributor chain, where the company announced several news during the quarter. Agreements were signed with German incontinence specialist Sayco Europe and British iMEDicare, both specialising in pelvic floor health products in their respective markets.
Invent Medic also signed a framework agreement with Region Stockholm for the delivery of the bladder support, an agreement that starts in June and then runs for a maximum of four years. This means that the product is represented in ten Swedish regions: Blekinge, Jämtland Härjedalen, Kalmar, Kronoberg, Norrbotten, Stockholm, Värmland, Västernorrland, Västra Götaland and Östergötland.
The company also announced an agreement with Apoteket AB regarding the menstrual cup, which means that it is available for purchase at apoteket.se from the end of June.
Unchanged sales figures
In other words, expectations are building for increased sales of the products, both from the company’s side and among investors. During the first quarter, sales amounted to just over SK 0.5 MSEK, which was broadly in line with the same period last year. Operating profit amounted to -4.4 MSEK, which should be set in relation to the available cash position, which at the end of the period amounted to approximately 10.9 MSEK.
On the cost side, the company’s CEO Anna Lindström has said that the cost cuts announced in connection with the strategy update will come into full effect in the second quarter.
Positive signals regarding recurring sales
When it comes to sales during the first quarter, Lindström highlights some bright spots where she says she sees a positive trend in the form of a large number of recurring customers. According to her, a weak order intake in January was followed by stronger figures for both February and March. When it comes to sales going forward, she specifically points out the two new distributors in Germany and the UK as particularly important for achieving recurring sales there as well.
When it comes to the newly launched menstrual cup, Lindström reminds us that the company is still in an early phase of the market introduction and that the work to market and establish new distribution channels and sales routes continues. In terms of marketing, the focus in the menstrual cup project lies on digital campaigns, especially on social media. For the bladder support, the focus lies more on direct contact with the healthcare sector. Among other things, the product will be presented at the Congress of the Urotherapeutic Association in Östersund and in Norway, the distributor Quintet is conducting a roadshow.
Aiming for expanded product portfolio
But the existing products will not be the only tools used to strengthen the company’s sales in the future. Recently, the company announced an effort to expand its offering and complement the existing portfolio with more products. Invent Medic will focus on products that are fully developed and that have reached the market. The hope is that synergies will be achieved with the existing portfolio – both in terms of market and resource utilisation.
Confidence for the rest of 2022
All in all, Lindström looks forward to the rest of 2022 with confidence, a feeling that could also be detected on the stock market where Invent Medic’s share was traded up by about 40 per cent last Thursday. The share movement came as good news for a stock that has had a tough period on the exchange this year, like so many other smaller medtech stocks.
As the first quarter with the new strategy now is officially over, BioStock took the opportunity to contact Anna Lindström to hear more about her thoughts on the company’s development.
So far this year you have signed several distribution agreements. When can we expect to see results of this in the sales figures?
– Our new distributors are in the process of including Efemia bladder support in their sales channels. For sales through the national healthcare systems, we are in the process of registering and transferring the rights to the new distributors, which requires some paperwork and processing time with authorities. Here we are doing everything we can to speed things up.
Right now, you are investing heavily in social media campaigns to promote the menstrual cup. How have these campaigns been received?
– We have already had a large spread where we have reached a quarter of a million accounts on Instagram and we have also seen a good interaction on the posts with close to 400 comments and 4000 likes. These are important steps in the launch phase we are now in with brand building Efemia in the menstrual cup market and creating a large target group for the product.
You recently announced that you intend to bring more products into your portfolio via acquisitions. How is the work to identify potential acquisition candidates progressing?
– We are working intensively on that plan and trying to keep a high pace in the process where we are in the stage of identifying candidates and evaluating synergies.
You expect lower costs going forward, but how do you view the financial situation, given the latest earning result and your current cash position?
– The financial situation is something we are following closely. It is positive that we have more repeat customers than before and that the volumes are getting larger. The new distributor agreements for Germany and the UK are expected to contribute to increased revenues in the second half of the year. We also have high hopes for the agreement with Region Stockholm, the largest healthcare region in Sweden, which will be in effect from June.
The content of BioStock’s news and analyses is independent but the work of BioStock is to a certain degree financed by life science companies. The above article concerns a company from which BioStock has received financing.