DOUBLE digit growth has been reported by York veterinary health group Animalcare as the business reflects on a “transformational year”.

In its first full year results since the reverse takeover of Belgium-based Ecuphar NV, the enlarged York Business Park-based group posted a 22 per cent rise in revenues, up to £83.7 million.

In the 12 months ending December 31, 2017, which incorporated the acquisition of Ecuphar in July, Animalcare saw earnings (before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation), rise from £8.9 million in 2016 to £10 million.

Jan Boone, chairman of Animalcare Group, said: “2017 was a transformational year for Animalcare Group plc.

“While characterised by continued strong organic revenue growth, the most dominant factor during the year was the reverse acquisition of Ecuphar NV.

“It has positioned the Group to take advantage of the opportunities arising from the significantly enlarged footprint and sales network to deliver profitable, cash-generative growth enabling the Company to deliver long-term shareholder value.”

Organic growth of 11.3 per cent within the Ecuphar business contributed £76.1 million to overall Group revenues alongside £7.6 million from the original Animalcare business.

The business now has a considerably enlarged footprint and sales network with direct sales teams in seven European countries and an export network that covers more than 38 countries across Europe, Asia, Australasia, Africa and South America through 86 different distribution partners.

Within its product portfolio Animalcare has 50 licensed drugs, eight vaccines and more than 100 care and nutraceutical products employing around 100 sale representatives and 28 agents marketing products to a global customer base.

Chief executive Chris Cardon said: “”We expect growth in revenues to be driven by the launch of new products from our development pipeline, additional regulatory approvals for our existing products in new territories and the distribution of new products for US or Asia based third parties across our European footprint.

“We believe we are on track to deliver double digit profit growth during 2018 and enhancement to profit margins will be driven by further synergies and cross-selling opportunities, which will start to take effect late in 2018.”