IBA places panther in its engine

Through a joint venture with the Belgian nuclear research center SCK CEN, called Pantera, IBA intends to produce actinium-225 on a large scale by 2027. Update with financial analysts.

Pantera, panther in French. This is the name chosen for the development of the activity it should enable IBA

in order to expand the scope of its action in the years to come. It is affiliated to a joint venture created by the company neo-Luvanist and the Belgian Center for Nuclear Research SCK CEN.

Goal: ensure large production of actinium-225, one of the most promising alpha-emitting radioisotopes for the fight against cancer. This is the first implementation of the strategic research and development partnership project announced a year ago.

“We do not see funding as a problem, given that IBA has a net cash balance of €137 million.”

Michiel Declercq

Analysis at KBC Securities

But the road is still long. Pantera is currently completing technical feasibility studies that will allow it to begin construction of its first facility in Molo. The first works on this facility should begin in 2024 start of production in 2027the IBA said in a press release issued on Thursday morning.

100 million euros

Michiel Declercq, from KBC Securities (“buy”; 19 euros), emphasizes that the radiotherapy market is a very promising and rapidly growing market. The CEO of Novartis stated that this market could reach ten billion euros in the next decade, he said. The analyst also notes an increase in demand for radioisotope production through IBA’s own order book.

For now, no financial details of this joint venture have been released. However, IBA specified that the production unit Mol it can cost around 100 million euros. “It will be interesting to see if IBA attracts other investors in the years to come, notes Michiel Declercq. However, we do not see financing as a problem, given that IBA has a net cash balance of 137 million euros“.

Turning point

Laura Roba, from Degroof Petercam (“buy”; 22.7 euros), for his part believes that the production of actinium-225 represents a promising opportunity for IBA. For her, this is one of the potential turning points for society.

“Panther could become one of the most competitive sources of actinium-225 in the future.”

Laura Roba

Analyst at Degroof Petercam

Currently, high-quality production of large quantities of actinium-225 remains a challenge., notes the analyst. “IBA’s unique technology, combined with raw materials supplied by SCK CEN, would allow Panthera to potentially become one of the most competitive sources of actinium-225 in the future,” she says.

However, the results of the technical feasibility studies are awaited in order to have greater visibility on the project’s financing conditions. before including actinium-225 in your estimate.

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