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The Korea Herald
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THE INVESTOR
April 24, 2024

Market Now

Samsung Biologics stocks extend rally on US bill

  • PUBLISHED :January 31, 2024 - 09:43
  • UPDATED :January 31, 2024 - 09:43
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Samsung Biologics' third plant in Songdo, Incheon (Samsung Biologics)

Samsung Biologics shares extended a rally Tuesday on upbeat sentiment that the company may be benefiting from US-proposed legislation that aims to restrict Chinese biotech firms from accessing the all-important American market.

Last week, members of a bipartisan House Select Committee introduced a bill barring contracts with Beijing Genomics Institute and some Chinese biotech companies for their alleged connection with China’s People’s Liberation Army.

The proposed bill specifically named WuXi AppTec and its sister companies, including Wuxi’s contract development manufacturing organization arm WuXi Biologics. WuXi Biologics alone suffered a 15 percent fall in share prices over the past five days.

On the other hand, its contract development and manufacturing organization rival Samsung Biologics saw its share prices jump some 4 percent on Monday, the first trading day following the news. On Tuesday, shares were trading at 829,000 won ($622) as of 1 p.m., up 3.63 percent from the previous day.

“Samsung Biologics’ main partners are based in the US and Europe. If the proposed bill is passed, the Korean firm will be able to fill the Chinese void by securing more federal contracts,” an industry source familiar with the matter said.

Samsung Biologics is one of the top CDMOs globally. Swiss company Lonza leads the market with 20.7 percent, followed by US-based Catalent at 12 percent, China’s WuXi Biologics with 10.2 percent and Samsung Biologics with 9.3 percent. WuXi is believed to depend on US orders for almost half its sales.

“Amid the escalating US-China rivalry, international pharmaceutical firms will prefer Samsung Biologics over WuXi Biologics to reduce geopolitical risks,” said Samsung Securities analyst Seo Keun-hee.

But Park Jae-kyung, a researcher at Hana Securities, remained cautious about painting a rosy outlook, citing the still nascent stage of the legislation process.

“There are uncertainties surrounding the bill’s approval. Samsung and WuXi have different business models. Samsung would see a limited impact from the bill itself,” she said.

By Shim Woo-hyun (ws@heraldcorp.com)

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