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Profit warning: Orion estimates notably weaker Q1 profit than last year. Also full-year profit will decline.

The operating profit of the Orion Group for the first quarter of 2003 will be remarkably lower than that of the corresponding period last year, which was EUR 23.2 million. The result will particularly suffer from the already realised and still anticipated costs related to the termination of the Phase 3 research programme of deramciclane, altogether about EUR 7 million, all of which will be booked in the Q1 operating profit of Orion Pharma.  
The fallen prices of pharmaceuticals due to the recent introduction of generic substitution in Finland will be reflected in Orion Pharma's full-year profit. The measures to improve operations by means of personnel reductions, among others, in order to minimise the impacts of generic substitution on the profit in Orion Pharma will also cause additional costs. The positive impacts of the measures are anticipated to be reflected in the results not earlier than next year.
In accordance with the current outlook, the Orion Group full-year operating profit is estimated to decline somewhat from last year.
Despite the termination of the deramciclane research project, Orion maintains the earlier announced estimate of the Group's total R&D expenditure of EUR 100 million. 
Orion Corporation

Jukka Viinanen               Jari Karlson
President and CEO         CFO
Contact persons
Jukka Viinanen, President and CEO, Orion Group, phone +358 10 429 3710
Jari Karlson, CFO, Orion Group, phone +358 10 429 2883
Orion Corporation
Corporate Administration
Orionintie 1, 02200 Espoo
Heikki Vuonamo, Corporate VP, Communications
Phone +358 10 429 4967