FAST NEWS: Ascletis Pharma’s Monkeypox Drug Gets IND Approval

The latest: Ascletis Pharma Inc. (1672.HK) announced on Thursday that the China National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) has approved an Investigational New Drug (IND) application for its oral viral polymerase inhibitor ASC10 to treat monkeypox. Looking up: Preclinical studies showed ASC10-A, the active metabolite converted from ASC10, exhibited potent antiviral activity against both the monkeypox and Covid-19 viruses. Take Note: As of Jan. 25, only 85,106 confirmed cases of monkeypox virus had been identified worldwide, as a recent epidemic remains under control after an outbreak last year. As a result,…

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Riding Covid Vaccine Highs, CanSino Plans Swiss Listing

The first vaccine stock to be listed in the both Mainland China and Hong Kong will issue global depositary receipts (GDRs) in Switzerland Key Takeaways: By Molly Wen After becoming China’s first vaccine maker to list in both Hong Kong and Shanghai, CanSino Biologics Inc. (6185.HK; 688185.SH) is looking to spread its wings beyond its Asian home. It announced its new flight plan last Tuesday, aiming to go public on the SIX Swiss Exchange using global depositary receipts, becoming the first Chinese GDR issue in 2023. CanSino said details of…

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FAST NEWS: Topsports’ Quarterly Sales Decline, But Shares Still Jump

The latest: Topsports International Holdings Ltd. (6110.HK), a major distributor for Nike and Adidas in China, said on Wednesday combined sales for its retail and wholesale operations registered a high-teens decline year-on-year in its third fiscal quarter through November. Looking up: The company continued its strategy of replacing numerous smaller-format stores with a smaller number of large-format ones. During the period, the gross selling area of its directly-operated stores fell by 1.3% versus the end of previous quarter, and declined by 5.7% year-on-year, which may help to alleviate its rental expenses. Take Note:…

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FAST NEWS: Ascletis Covid, Monkeypox Virus Inhibitor Gets U.S. Patent

The latest: Ascletis Pharma Inc. (1672.HK) said on Monday the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has granted it a patent for its oral viral polymerase inhibitor ASC10 and its derivatives, and their uses to treat multiple virus infections including Covid-19, monkeypox and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). Looking up: Ascletis has become the first Chinese biotech company granted a U.S. patent for a self-developed oral viral polymerase inhibitor and its derivatives, which will be commercially protected until 2042. Take Note: ASC10 is only in clinical trials for the treatment of…

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FAST NEWS: SSY Group Signs Preliminary Deal to Make Fever Medication

The latest: SSY Group Ltd. (2005.HK) said on Sunday it signed a letter of intent with a well-known Chinese pharmaceutical company to produce 1 billion to 2.5 billion ibuprofen sustained-release tablets annually, and up to 65 million packs of pediatric paracetamol granules. Looking up: Both ibuprofen and paracetamol are used to treat fever, and thus should be in high demand as the number of Covid-19 cases grows in mainland China. Both were included on a State Council reference list of commonly used drugs for fever treatment. Take Note: The parties…

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Big-Spending Game Developer ZX Rolls the Dice With IPO Plan

Despite benefiting from a gaming surge during Covid lockdowns, the company’s finances still contain some red flags as it eyes a Hong Kong listing Key Takeaways: ZX Inc.’s revenue and profit both grew significantly in the first half of the year as frequent lockdowns sparked an online gaming craze The company had just 290 million yuan in cash and 2 billion yuan in net current liabilities at the end of June By Fai Pui In 2017, Hong Kong movie star Nick Cheung challenged Chinese gamers to “cross me if you…

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Profits Soar at Pinduoduo as Shoppers Chase Online Bargains

The e-commerce platform that specializes in farm produce and low-cost consumer goods reported bumper profits in the third quarter and achieved a bigger revenue jump than its rivals Key Takeaways: Pinduoduo beat market expectations by boosting revenue and profit in the third quarter, powering a surge in its share price The company’s overseas expansion, although in its early stages, has made a positive impression on investors By Lau Ming With consumer confidence shaken by Covid and economic worries, even some of China’s biggest e-commerce firms have struggled to attract more…

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FAST NEWS: Nayuki Acquires Stake in Tea-Maker Peer Lelecha for $75 Million

The latest: Premium tea chain operator Nayuki Holdings Ltd. (2150.HK) said on Monday it agreed to acquire 43.64% of rival Lelecha for 525 million yuan ($75 million). Following the purchase, Lelecha will become a Nayuki associate and continue to operate independently. Looking up: Nayuki said can use its strengths in store expansion, supply chain, digitalization and automation, and internal management to help Lelecha achieve further growth. Take Note: The purchase price gives Lelecha a price-to-book (P/B) ratio of 6.6 times, based on its net asset value of about 182 million yuan last year. That’s…

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FAST NEWS: Cost Reductions Help KE Holdings Return to Profits

The latest: Residential real estate broker KE Holdings Inc. (BEKE.US; 2423.HK) reported on Wednesday its revenue fell 2.8% year-on-year in the third quarter to 17.6 billion yuan ($2.45 billion), as it returned to the black with a net profit of $716 million yuan versus a loss a year earlier. Looking up: The company’s cost of revenues dropped 16.3% to 12.8 billion yuan during the period, mainly due to 21.9% and 23.3% reductions in its number of agents and stores, respectively, resulting in a significant reduction in commissions, salaries and store costs. Take Note: The…

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ZTO Express Delivers Exceptional Profits for Investors

The company was the most profitable in China’s ultra-competitive parcel delivery industry during the third quarter Key Takeaways: ZTO Express’ revenue grew much faster than its operating costs in the third quarter, allowing it to post 65% profit growth and industry-leading margins The company’s newly boosted stock buyback and application for an upgrade to primary listing status in Hong Kong could help to lift its shares By Ken Lo China’s already ultra-competitive express delivery industry got a jolt early last year when newcomer J&T Express turned up the heat by…

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