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Promisia widens first-half loss as it chases US expansion

Promisia Intergrative [NZX: PIL], the listed-therapeutic health supplements company, widened its first-half loss as it looks to expand its Arthrem brand into the United States. The shares gained.

The Wellington-based company booked a loss $388,000 in the six months ended June 30, from a previous loss of $72,014 for the same period a year earlier, it said in a statement. Sales rose 85 percent to $122,000.

The company's Arthrem brand, which makes a herbal-based dietary supplement pill said to maintain long-term joint health, currently only sells in New Zealand, through distributor Pharmabroker and its online store. Chief Executive Charles Daily has relocated to the US where it wants to enter the market.

It is also spending on research to scientifically validate its herbal pills, and received funding from Callaghan Innovation, the government's innovation fund, which covered 40 percent of the cost to undertake its in vitro laboratory studies of its plant extracts which has had positive initial test results, Promisia said, without being more specific. It recieved further Callaghan assistance for its Dunedin Hospital trial.

"Our goal is to add scientific methodology and validity to an industry that is often perceived as unscientific," Promisia said in a statement. "Further development of new products, following similar steps as for Arthrem in terms of scientifically and clinically proving efficacy and safety and employing a similar sales platform, will bolster future sales growth."

Shares of Promisia rose 7.1 percent to 4.5 cents and have declined some 40 percent this year. The company also raised $567,000 from its share purchase plan and an additional placement of subscribed shares worth $1.28 million was made to a range of investors, it said. The new shares were all issued at 4.08 cents.

(BusinessDesk)