- Achiko reports an EBITDA loss of USD 4.6 million, including a non-cash share compensation expense of USD 1 million, incurred whilst transforming the company and moving to commercialisation.
- Focal points of the first half year were completion of product registration, organisational reconfiguration and a move to halving day-to-day operating costs, thus setting the foundation to commercialisation.
- AptameX, Achiko’s proprietary low-cost, saliva-based Covid-19 diagnostic, has shown competitive product performance to other Covid-19 testing solutions. When compared to PCR testing at an average CT score of 28.3, AptameX yielded a sensitivity of 77%.
- A joint venture was established in Indonesia, a country of over 270m people. Achiko partnered with PT Indofarma TBK for manufacturing and numerous other companies for distribution and groundwork ahead of planned sales in Q4 2021.
- After the balance sheet date, Achiko successfully registered the product in Indonesia and raised USD 3.85 million in financing with sophisticated investors.
Zurich, 27 September 2021: Ad hoc announcement pursuant to Art. 53 LR – Achiko AG (SWX: ACHI, ISIN CH0522213468) (“Achiko”, the “Company”) is pleased to announce its financial results for the period of 6 months to 30 June 2021, and its progress since then. The Company has conducted trials with its proprietary low-cost, saliva-based diagnostic test technology, AptameXTM, and has implemented organisational changes to lower its cost profile. Following the balance sheet date, AptameX alongside its sister digital passporting service Teman SehatTM (“Health Buddy”) have received approval from the Indonesian government. Achiko is currently building a sales and customer support team to begin sales operations in Q4 of 2021.
“We’ve successfully managed to reconfigure the organisation and complete studies on product performance with very good results”, said Steven Goh, CEO of Achiko. “The transformation has been challenging, given the global footprint of the Company. However, post balance sheet date, we have successfully registered the product, financed the company, and completed the patent filing. We’re looking forward to meeting our earlier guidances and delivering sales in Q4 as well as both broadening the commercialisation footprint geographically with AptameX, and horizontally with complementary products and services.”
AptameX: Product development, sales and market outlook
“We believe that overcoming the Covid-19 pandemic will require a combination of vaccines, testing and thereapeutics”, Steven Goh added. “We’re all longing for a Covid-19-free future. Vaccines may help us in this endeavour, but for the vast majority of the planet, we think that testing and assurance systems will be a part of our lives for the rest of this decade”.
Over the balance sheet period, the Company conducted Phase 1 of its testing for AptameX in a 96-well plate format and has proceeded to subsequent phases and finally a product registration. Early results in that format have exceeded expectations even at high CT scores. A high CT score indicates low viral loads. At a high industry CT score of 28.3, AptameX delivered a sensitivity of 77% (95% CI: 75.94 – 79.24), which is comparable to current lateral flow rapid tests. At lower CT scores, the early results indicate that AptameX may be competitive with many other rapid tests. These results imply that Achiko may be able to provide a test that outperforms most rapid tests by detection, at a cost / speed format that many PCR testing approaches fail to reach. The calibration work, which may show continuing gains in product performance, is close to completion.
Integration of AptameX into Teman Sehat
Additionally, the AptameX Covid-19 diagnostic test was successfully integrated into the Teman Sehat digital passporting service for launch in Indonesia, which was was approved by the local Indonesian government and launched in June 2020 in Pekanbaru, Indonesia. The combination of AptameX and Teman Sehat creates an accurate, low-cost, state-of-the-art digital ecosystem that covers the entire Covid-19 testing user journey, from test scheduling to payments to obtaining a result within minutes to help mitigate the spread of Covid-19.
Testing 3 to 5 times per month contributes to the safety of users and communities while providing strong potential revenue streams for Achiko through Teman Sehat. The testing ecosystem can be used as a mass screening product to secure both geographic targets ranging from neighbourhoods to countries, or vertical market targets such as food processing, transport, mine sites, healthcare and many other high value situations.
Commercialisation in Indonesia and beyond
For commercialisation and use of resources, the Company has focussed on approval with its manufacturing partner, PT Indofarma TBK, in Indonesia. Through its joint venture partner PT Indonesia Farma Medis (“IFM”), Achiko has laid the groundwork with a distribution certificate for Indonesia. IFM is undertaking the initial rollout of AptameX and the mobile app Teman Sehat in Indonesia. Achiko earns a profit share relative to its 50% holding and a 10% licensing fee from gross sales.
Achiko’s research and clinical development teams remain predominantly in Europe and the United Kingdom. Product development has been moved entirely to Taiwan and Indonesia in order to quickly scale to high production capacity, towards immediately providing AptameX to the Indonesian population. Also joining the Company are key personnel whose expertise will enhance operations in Indonesia and Taiwan.
In August 2021, Achiko secured product and registration approval from Indonesia’s government for AptameX, alongside Teman Sehat, and has moved onto production. Key supplies from conjugate to spetrophotometry are being sourced out of Taiwan, and plastics from Indonesia. The Company is currently gearing up for large scale production and expects the first substantial production output in early Q4 2021.
Achiko and its joint venture partner have started recruiting and training sales and customer support teams, making investments in production plant and equipment, and are currently presenting to potential customers in Indonesia with a view to first sales in early Q4 2021.
“At our current pace and subject to business conditions, we expect to make our earlier guidance providing services to over five million people either as a mass market screener or to vertical markets at the end of the year”, said Steven Goh.
With the increasing pace of operational progress, Achiko is now moving to complete a CE mark registration later this year and is responding to sales inquiries from around the globe. Additionally, the Company is looking to expand its diagnostics portfolio with additional and complementary products.
Achiko concluded the first half of 2021 with an operating loss of USD 4.6 million in comparison to a loss of USD 5 million in the first half of 2020.
Share option expenses were lowered by USD 2.1 million to compensate for the loss of the revenue from the fintech business of USD 0.4 million, higher costs for salaries and board remuneration (including CEO costs) of USD 0.6 million and higher R&D as well as other operating costs of USD 0.7 million. Beneath the operating loss are substantial gains in business.
The management of Achiko has spent the first half of 2021 focussing on product development, lowering its cost profile and reorganising its leadership team in line with finalising the transition from a fintech to a healthtech diagnostic company. The overall burn rate has been significantly reduced. Dr Morris S. Berrie, a biotechnology research scientist and entrepreneur, was appointed to the position of President on 11 January 2021 and Mr Robert Rieder was appointed as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) on 1 June 2021. Advisory Board member Charles Pan, who is based in Taipei, Taiwan, took on oversight of manufacturing and commercialisation operations on a full-time basis. In addition, Board member John Lin and Chief Operating Officer Chris Young retired in May and June 2021, respectively.
Post balance date, the Company has completed a USD 3.85 million in financing by a number of sophisticated investors. Funds have been applied to commercialisation efforts, redeeming the outstanding balance to Yorkville, and bringing the company towards good standing.
Steven Goh commented: “We are extremely thankful and grateful to our shareholders and the efforts of those who worked tirelessly to enable us to position ourselves where we are now: a leaner and more strategically aligned company entirely focused on healthtech diagnostics in the era of Covid-19.”
ABOUT ACHIKO AG
Achiko creates and develops new innovations in healthcare technology through its biotechnology division, AptameXTM, and its sister digital mobile health technology division, Teman SehatTM. The Company has created a unique healthtech capability that provides user-friendly diagnostic testing integrated with a digital passport solution for the management of Covid-19.
AptameX comprises of DNA aptamer-based technology that is cost-effective, chemically synthesised and widely applicable to the evolving diagnostic field of healthcare. Together with the digital mobile health app Teman Sehat, Achiko is developing potential technologies that seek to deliver rapid, affordable diagnostic testing for a range of pathogenic diseases and therapeutic indications. The AptameX technology is licensed from Regenacellx.sl and Achiko has exclusive commercialisation rights.
Headquartered in Zurich, Achiko has offices in Hong Kong, Jakarta, Seoul and Singapore.
Further information can be found at www.achiko.com.
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The 2021 half-year report is available from 06:30am CEST in the Financials section of the website www.achiko.com/financials.
Presentation of 1H21 Results on Monday, 27 September
Achiko AG (SWX: ACHI, ISIN CH0522213468) will hold its H1 2021 Financial Results Presentation as a virtual Zoom Meeting, led by Steven Goh, CEO of Achiko AG, and Robert Rieder, CFO of Achiko AG. Please note that the presentation will be in English.
Date: Monday, September 27, 2021 at 08.00 a.m. (CEST)
Location: The presentation will be broadcast live as a virtual Zoom meeting via this link (https://farnerconsulting.lpages.co/achiko-h1-2021-results-presentation).
Participants are advised to log on to the conference and register their details 10 minutes prior to the conference call.
This communication expressly or implicitly contains certain forward-looking statements concerning Achiko AG and its business. Such statements involve certain known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, which could cause the actual results, financial condition, performance or achievements of Achiko AG to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Achiko AG is providing this communication as of this date and does not undertake to update any forward-looking statements contained herein as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.