General and mid-term outlook
Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Management Board considers the Fresenius Group’s prospects for the coming years to be positive due to the increasing global demand for our products, services, and therapies. Some trends, such as the digitalization of health care, will even be accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, and we believe that we are very well positioned as a Group to benefit from this in the coming years.
We are continuously striving to optimize our costs, to adjust our capacities, and to improve our product mix, as well as to expand our products and services business. For further information, please see our cost and efficiency program.
We also plan to expand our biosimilarsBiosimilarsA biosimilar is a drug that is “similar” to another biologic drug already approved. product portfolio. We expect these efforts to increase our earnings in the coming years. In addition, good growth opportunities for Fresenius are, above all, presented by the following factors:
- The sustained growth of the markets in which we operate: Fresenius still sees very good opportunities to benefit from the growing health care needs arising from aging populations, with their growing demand for comprehensive care, and technical advances, but driven also by the still-insufficient access to health care in the developing and emerging countries. There are above average growth opportunities for us not only in the markets of Asia-Pacific and Latin America, but also in Africa. Efficient health care systems with appropriate reimbursement structures will evolve over time in these countries, as economic conditions improve. We will strengthen our activities in these regions and introduce further products from our portfolio into these markets successively.
- The expansion of our regional presence: Fresenius Medical Care expects excellent growth opportunities in the field of dialysisDialysisForm of renal replacement therapy where a semipermeable membrane – in peritoneal dialysis the peritoneum of the patient, in hemo dialysis the membrane of the dialyzer – is used to clean a patient’s blood. in the Asia-Pacific region. The fast growing markets in Asia-Pacific, Latin America, and Africa especially offer further potential to strengthen our market position of Fresenius Kabi. They offer excellent mid-term growth opportunities in infusion and nutrition therapies, IV drugs, and medical devices. We plan to further roll out additional products and therapies from our existing portfolio in countries where we do not yet offer a comprehensive range or are not yet represented. Fresenius Helios sees good opportunities for further international growth, including in Latin America. Here, Helios Spain is already represented in Colombia and Peru.
- The broadening of our services business: there are significant growth opportunities for Fresenius Medical Care in the field of dialysis treatment as soon as a country opens up to private dialysis providers or allows public and private providers to cooperate, for instance in public-private partnerships. Whether and in what form private companies can offer dialysis treatment depends on the health care system and the legal framework of the respective country. Fresenius Helios has an extensive nationwide hospital network in Germany and Spain. Based on this platform, Fresenius Helios aims to develop and offer innovative, integrated care offerings. In addition, Helios Germany is expanding outpatient services. Patient care should be further improved through the exchange of knowledge and experience (best practice) between Helios Germany and Helios Spain. Growth opportunities in Spain arise from expansion and construction of hospitals, and further consolidation potential in the highly fragmented Spanish private hospital market. The close integration of Helios Spain’s facilities for occupational risk prevention within the Spanish hospital network offers additional growth opportunities. In addition, Fresenius Helios is seizing growth opportunities in Latin America through acquisitions to exploit potential in the private hospital market. Helios is also expanding its business in the field of fertility services, thus complementing its range of services. Fresenius Vamed is driving the expansion of high-end services such as the management of medical devices, sterile services, operational technology, and IT development.
- The broadening of our products business: at Fresenius Medical Care, we see the planned expansion of the core business with dialysis products as a growth driver. At Fresenius Kabi, we plan to expand our IV drugs product business. We develop generic drug formulations that are ready to launch at the time of market formation, directly after the patents of the branded products expire. We also develop new formulations for non-patented drugs. Furthermore, we develop ready-to-use products that are especially convenient and safe, including, for example, pre-filled syringes and ready-to-use solutions in our freeflex infusion bags. Furthermore, we plan to expand our biosimilars product portfolio.
- Digitalization and the development of innovative products and therapies: these will create the potential to further expand our market position in the regions. In addition to innovation, best-in-class quality, reliability, and the convenience of our products and therapies are key factors here. This will provide growth potential for Fresenius Medical Care. In addition, Fresenius Kabi is developing new dosage forms for its products. In the area of biosimilars, Fresenius Kabi specializes in the development of products for the treatment of autoimmune diseases and use in oncology and has a pipeline of molecules at various stages of development. Fresenius Helios is expanding its fertility services business segment to complement its range of innovative therapies. Helios Germany and Spain, as well as Fresenius Vamed are developing innovative business areas such as digital offerings. For example, health apps such as Curalie are being developed. Curalie is a platform and app for digital health programs according to scientific standards, e.g. for people with chronic diseases such as diabetes mellitus or heart failure. With Curalie, these patients can manage their illness digitally and receive important information and tips for a healthier life.
- Selective acquisitions: besides retaining organic sales growth as the basis for our business, we will continue to utilize opportunities to grow by making small and mid-sized acquisitions that expand our product portfolio and strengthen our regional presence.
We are also exploiting any opportunities within our operations for cost management and efficiency enhancement measures. These include plans for cost-efficient production and a further-optimized procurement process. Furthermore, we can use digital technologies to speed up central administrative processes and increase their efficiency.
The outlook takes account of all events known at the time the annual financial statements were prepared that could influence our operating performance in 2022 and beyond.
Significant risks are discussed in the Opportunities and Risk Report. As in the past, we will do our utmost to achieve and – if possible – exceed our targets.