SYDNEY, AAP – Biotech firm CSL has posted a $US1.76 billion ($2.46 billion) net profit in its half-year results, down 5 per cent, after the COVID-19 pandemic inhibited its ability to collect plasma, a core part of its business.

But the blood products giant was able to boost revenue through, in part, strong sales of seasonal flu vaccines in several continents.

The company declared an interim dividend of $US1.04 per share. The dividend replicates the amount paid out in the corresponding period, but represents an increase when currency movements are taken into account.

CSL, one of the largest listed companies in Australia, said its ability to collect plasma had been improving as social mobility increases, underpinning a stronger outlook.

“We have responded by implementing multiple initiatives in our plasma collections network, which has given rise to significant improvement in plasma volumes collected,” CSL CEO Paul Perreault said in a statement.

CSL’s business model relies on its ability to collect plasma and convert it into medical treatments.

The company has been manufacturing the bulk of the local supply of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in Australia.