The European Investment Bank (EIB) and Newron Pharmaceuticals S.p.A. (Newron) (SIX: NWRN), a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of novel therapies for patients with diseases of the central and peripheral nervous system (CNS), signed a financing agreement today, which will allow the Company to borrow up to EUR 40 million over the coming years, subject to achieving a set of agreed performance criteria.
This EIB loan is backed by the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the central pillar of the Investment Plan for Europe, the Juncker Plan.
Neurological disorders affect up to one billion people worldwide1. In Europe alone, the annual economic cost of neurological diseases was estimated at about EUR 139 billion in 20042, said Ambroise Fayolle, Vice President of the EIB responsible for operations under EFSI and Innovation. Many patients with CNS diseases are in need of new or more efficacious therapeutics. The EU bank provides long-term and stable capital support to help drive innovation and clinical success in this field. Its this type of support for innovative companies like Newron that is crucial to strengthening Europes competitiveness.
European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Vytenis Andriukaitis said: “Sustained investment in research and innovation for treatment of neurological disorders is critical. This new agreement provides further evidence of the EU added value of the Investment Plan, not only for the competitiveness of the EU economy, but above all for the citizens’ wellbeing.”
Stefan Weber, Chief Executive Officer of Newron Pharmaceuticals, added: We are very pleased that the EIB has recognized the potential of Newrons current R&D activities. This loan will provide us with additional financial flexibility over the coming years and significantly enhance our resources. We may use it to further advance our key assets to market and beyond and help in maximizing their market potential.
Newron aims to build a leading Central Nervous System (CNS) company that searches, develops and commercializes innovative drugs, with a special focus on rare diseases. The companys first product developed in-house, Xadago (safinamide), is the first New Chemical Entity in a decade approved in Europe and the U.S. for the treatment of Parkinsons disease (PD). The product is commercialized in a number of European markets as well as in the USA and the Companys partners Zambon and Meiji Seika Pharma are working towards global approval. Newron has two advanced product candidates in late stage clinical development: Sarizotan for the treatment of respiratory disturbances in Rett syndrome, which is evaluated in the ongoing potentially pivotal STARS (Sarizotan Treatment of Apneas in Rett Syndrome) study, and Evenamide as an add-on therapy for the treatment of certain symptoms of schizophrenia, with the additional potential to improve the life of patients who are treatment resistant to Clozapine.
Newron plans to directly market orphan or orphan-like drugs emerging of its innovative clinical pipeline, and to consider partner opportunities directed at larger markets when offering the best return to Newrons shareholders.
EIB financing is intended to boost Newrons R&D activities and will primarily be used to support the Companys pivotal and post approval stage development programs in diseases of the central nervous system.
About Newron Pharmaceuticals Newron (SIX: NWRN) is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of novel therapies for patients with diseases of the central and peripheral nervous system. The company is headquartered in Bresso near Milan, Italy. Xadago/safinamide has received marketing authorization for the treatment of Parkinsons disease in the European Union, Switzerland and the USA, and is commercialized by Newrons Partner Zambon. US WorldMeds holds the commercialization rights in the USA. Meiji Seika has the rights to develop and commercialize the compound in Japan and other key Asian territories. In addition to Xadago/safinamide for Parkinsons disease, Newron has a strong pipeline of promising treatments for rare disease patients at various stages of clinical development, including Sarizotan for patients with Rett syndrome and ralfinamide for patients with specific rare pain indications. Newron is also developing Evenamide as the potential first add-on therapy for the treatment of patients with positive symptoms of schizophrenia. For more information, please visit: www.newron.com.
About the EIB The EIB is the long-term lending institution of the EU. It is owned by and represents the interests of the European Union countries. The Bank makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU policy goals. The EIB works closely with other EU institutions to implement EU policy.
The Investment Plan for Europe The Investment Plan for Europe, the so-called Juncker Plan, is one of European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker’s top priorities. It focuses on boosting European investments to create jobs and growth by making smarter use of new and existing financial resources, removing obstacles to investment and providing visibility and technical assistance to investment projects.
The European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) is the central pillar of the Investment Plan. It allows the EIB to invest in more, often riskier, projects. EFSI is already showing concrete results. The projects and agreements approved for financing until October 2018, three years after EFSI came into being, will mobilise EUR 344.4 bn in total investments and support some 793 000 SMEs across all 28 Member States.
The latest EFSI figures by sector and by country are available here.
This document contains forward-looking statements, including (without limitation) about (1) Newrons ability to develop and expand its business, successfully complete development of its current product candidates and current and future collaborations for the development and commercialisation of its product candidates and reduce costs (including staff costs), (2) the market for drugs to treat CNS diseases and pain conditions, (3) Newrons anticipated future revenues, capital expenditures and financial resources, and (4) assumptions underlying any such statements. In some cases, these statements and assumptions can be identified by the fact that they use words such as will, anticipate, estimate, expect, project, intend, plan, believe, target, and other words and terms of similar meaning. All statements, other than historical facts, contained herein regarding Newron’s strategy, goals, plans, future financial position, projected revenues and costs and prospects are forward-looking statements. By their very nature, such statements and assumptions involve inherent risks and uncertainties, both general and specific, and risks exist that predictions, forecasts, projections and other outcomes described, assumed or implied therein will not be achieved. Future events and actual results could differ materially from those set out in, contemplated by or underlying the forward-looking statements due to a number of important factors. These factors include (without limitation) (1) uncertainties in the discovery, development or marketing of products, including without limitation negative results of clinical trials or research projects or unexpected side effects, (2) delay or inability in obtaining regulatory approvals or bringing products to market, (3) future market acceptance of products, (4) loss of or inability to obtain adequate protection for intellectual property rights, (5) inability to raise additional funds, (6) success of existing and entry into future collaborations and licensing agreements, (7) litigation, (8) loss of key executive or other employees, (9) adverse publicity and news coverage, and (10) competition, regulatory, legislative and judicial developments or changes in market and/or overall economic conditions. Newron may not actually achieve the plans, intentions or expectations disclosed in forward-looking statements, and assumptions underlying any such statements may prove wrong. Investors should therefore not place undue reliance on them. There can be no assurance that actual results of Newron’s research programmes, development activities, commercialisation plans, collaborations and operations will not differ materially from the expectations set out in such forward-looking statements or underlying assumptions. Newron does not undertake any obligation to publicly update or revise forward-looking statements except as may be required by applicable regulations of the SIX Swiss Exchange, where the shares of Newron are listed. This announcement is not an offer for sale of securities in the United States, Canada, Australia or Japan or any other jurisdiction where such an offer or solicitation would otherwise be unlawful. The securities referred to herein may not be sold in the United States absent registration or an exemption from registration under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended. Newron does not intend to register any of its securities in the United States or to conduct a public offering of its securities in the United States. This document does not contain or constitute an offer or invitation to purchase or subscribe for any securities of Newron and no part of this document shall form the basis of or be relied upon in connection with any contract or commitment whatsoever.
1 World Health Organization (WHO), Neurological Disorders “ public health challenges, 2006. 2 According to a study published in the European Journal of Neurology, June 2005.
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Best Banking Technology Overhaul Africa 2020,Best Banking Technology Overhaul LatAm 2020, and Fastest Growing Payment Solution Provider Europe 2020
Global Banking and Finance Review is pleased to announce BPC as the 2020 Global Banking & Finance Awards® winner for Best Banking Technology Overhaul Africa 2020,Best Banking Technology Overhaul LatAm 2020, and Fastest Growing Payment Solution Provider Europe 2020
Global Banking and Finance Review has awarded BPC in recognition for its banking and payments technology leadership,growth,and innovation. “BPC is redefining banking and payments. They are focused on developing innovative technology solutions that make banking and payments more efficient, cost-effective, and readily accessible. Their attention to what is most needed in local markets, as well as their ability to adapt their services, marks BPC as an exceptional organization. Their continued investment in technology, strategic vision, and growth made them the clear winner this year,” said Wanda Rich, Editor, Global Banking & Finance Review. “We look forward to seeing more from them in the years to come. “
The awards honour companies that stand out in particular areas of expertise in the banking and finance industry. BPC was awarded Best Banking Technology Overhaul Africa 2020, Best Banking Technology Overhaul LatAm 2020, and Fastest Growing Payment Solution Provider Europe 2020 because of the company’s outstanding performance and achievements and by scoring well in the following categories:
- Investment in technology to improve compliance and user experience
- A wide range of secure, customizable solutions
- Continued commitment to improve user experience and access
- Excellence in customer support
About the Global Banking & Finance Awards®
The Global Banking & Finance Awards® honour institutions that stand out in their particular area of expertise in the finance industry. They recognize achievement, challenge, progress and inspirational change in finance globally. Global Banking & Finance Review is a leading online and print magazine, which has evolved from the growing need to have a more balanced view for informative and independent news for the global banking and finance industry. It is reflected in the quality and in-depth insight provided by our experienced contributors in a clear and concise way. We have objective and respected editorial contributions from all major sectors, such as Banking, Technology, FOREX Trading, Asset Management, Corporate Governance, Islamic Finance, Project Finance, Mergers and Acquisitions, Tax and Accounting and Inward Investment; all under one global umbrella.
For Further Information, please visit www.globalbankingandfinance.com
NextGen Communications – the future of customer experience
By Andrew Beatty, Head of Global Next Generation Banking at FIS
As software development increasingly resembles push updates in services, how can financial institutions best take advantage of their investments? The answer is leveraging today’s technologies to empower institutions to elevate their customer experience with personalised and integrated communications.
Long a staple of the British market, digital banks are expanding worldwide. The pandemic played to the strengths of these organisations. With branches closed or restricted, the accessibility and flexibility of these banks were major assets.
To better understand just why digital banks succeed, we need to look at their operating models. Using Software as a Service (SaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) operating models rather than more traditional and slower alternatives allows them to supercharge development.
These new technologies can elevate customer experience (CX), with a specific focus on customer communications – an area often neglected in favour of purely aesthetic upgrades to flashy-looking front-end systems.
Every minute of every day, institutions globally generate 18 million texts, 188 million emails, 511,000 tweets, 232 VoIP calls and use 4.4 million GB of internet data. This colossal amount makes it difficult to provide a consistent experience that meets ever-higher customer expectations across all communication interactions and devices. Banks need to be accessible and provide a seamless experience through any and all of the channels their customers prefer, be that Native App Push, email, SMS, print, social media, Call Centre or bots.
FIs typically lack an integrated experience. What’s needed is enabled by a consistent data schema and workflow foundation that elevates the communications experience. Customers may not know to specifically request these, but they will notice their absence. Fundamental to these capabilities are application programming interfaces (APIs) that enable banks to pick and choose best-of-breed technologies, allowing banks to focus on improving the CX and increasing Operational Efficiency and Governance.
Banks succeed on the backs of loyal customers. What inspires loyalty in customers is a banking relationship that includes both listening and speaking. Research shows that 63% of customers would consider switching banking providers if communications don’t meet their expectations. For customers who said that their banks did not proactively offer them personalised services, the customer satisfaction experience rate fell to 39%.
Research shows that more than 70% of CX leaders struggle to design projects that increase customer loyalty. Contrast this number with 75% of enterprises aiming to beat their competitors by offering the best digital consumer experience, and we can gain a sense of just how crucial communications are; a seamless CX is more important than ever to meet these goals.
These last few months have been a testing ground for banks old and new. Every email, every statement about actions taken during the pandemic is a chance to prove (or disprove) that a bank has a robust, customised communication solution. Integration across all interactions is critical.
Questions to ask
Here are six questions executives who want to improve CX at their banks need to ask when evaluating infrastructure improvements:
- How will capabilities evolve without requiring extensive development to support new data schemas, workflow, communication types and new channels?
- Will the new solution allow accelerated change management (business user-enabled) of all communications to meet internal and external demand, or will we be handcuffed to an internal or external software release for these updates?
- Will our middle/back office and call centre benefit from this solution by having the capability to send ad-hoc communications from a previously approved library?
- Will we have end-to-end tracking of all our as-delivered communications for all stakeholders (call centre, back office, etc.)?
- How is delivery remediation handled? (e., failed email delivery to SMS)
- Are all required delivery methods supported in one centralised platform?
Consider these questions before embarking on a major project. This should help ensure the selected solution results in improved Customer Experience, superior Operational Efficiency, and better Governance for your financial institution.
FIs must take advantage of emerging technologies and investment in core technologies by considering service options for all key elements of their CX. A robust data integration and workflow layer along with API integrations allow the different components of technology infrastructure to have seamless real-time integrations with third-party Customer Communication Management technologies. This can accelerate existing digital transformation initiatives and take full advantage of a modern core transformation investment – putting technology to work for FIs and their customers.
5 reasons to rebrand now
By David Langton, president of Langton Creative Group and co-author of Visual Marketing (Wiley Publishers).
- Ineffective Logo. How well does your name and image support your company’s mission? Organizations must change and evolve and sometimes that cool logo from the 80s no longer pulls its weight. Are you defending your logo just because it’s old? We often hear about how an old logo has equity with clients. But just because it is recognizable as your logo, doesn’t mean that this is how you should be known. What impression is the logo making on your behalf? Is it classic, or just old-fashioned? One healthcare client had an old logo with bad typography that was difficult to reproduce. But the CEO loved his logo and told me that the old company logo wasn’t going anywhere, “I expect that to be on my gravestone,” he told us. And that’s exactly where it should be.
- Non-descript.Is your company or service getting lost in the shuffle? If your logo looks just like everyone else’s logo, then it’s not doing its job. You must distinguish who you are in your marketplace. What are the special attributes that make your company, product of service the right solution? Find that spark of novelty that makes you special. The FedEx logo is famous for its hidden “arrow” that implies forward-motion. (They’re ones who move your packages quickly.) The UPS logo is a golden shield. (They’ll protect your packages.) AT&T has a globe. (They want to be seen as world-wide, more than just an American telephone and telegraph company.) Designer Tom Geismar says, “Symbols don’t make clear what you do; it makes it clear who you are.”
- Leadership Change.Whenever the top management at a company changes there is an opportunity to inject new energy into your messaging and redefine your mission. Capture the vision of their leadership. How does your brand reflect their goals for the new year? When General Re acquired New England Asset Management (NEAM) the new company name became “GR-NEAM.” When a new leadership team took over they decided to reclaim the “NEAM” name since it was easier to say and it gave them an opportunity to promote their new vision for the organization.
- Mergers/Acquisitions. Newly combined companies usually are in a state of chaos. Inside and outside the company people are searching for what the newly combined company will be about. This is the time to reevaluate how your brand presents who you are and what your values and strengths are in the new combined company. A report in Harvard Business Review states, “Because a merger’s success relies in part on preserving positive feelings among customers and employees, it’s smart to pursue a branding strategy that explicitly seeks to transfer equity from both merging companies to the new one.” When United and Continental Airlines merged they kept the Continental logo and aligned it with the United Name. Companies that use this “fusion” method actually exceeded their market return by 3%.
- Technology.Is your field changing while you are being left behind? This is an important time for companies to re-evaluate how their brand is presented in the marketplace. An upstart may be perceived as quicker and more technological than an established player. Can you show how important your experience and know-how is for tackling the challenges in your industry? Domino’s Pizza keeps reinventing itself with new tech to stay ahead of newly emerging rivals like UberEats who use apps to deliver food. Fast Company shows how as early as 1973 Domino’s was introducing a 30-minute guaranteed delivery then continued to reinvest in tech that utilizes voice recognition, GPS tracking and artificial intelligence to keep on top of tech revolution. Successful companies develop tech solutions that keep them ahead of the competition and then make sure their brand communications reflect their inventiveness.
Be the brand you ought to be.
Keep in mind that even if your brand experiences any of these telltale signs, don’t embark on a rebrand without making sure your business can back up the brand promise. The key to effective branding is that you must be what your brand says you are. If you are rebranding to be more technological, then you must become more tech-savvy. Just rebranding yourself without improving your services and really redefining who you are is not going to be effective in the long run.
The key to a successful rebrand is in identifying a core story that expresses the brand’s connection to its audience. Why are you important in the eyes of your target customers? And how do you tell that story? The re-brand launch is just as important as the logo artwork and the naming of the organization.
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