Though weakness in China, volatile commodity prices and increasing concerns over the health of the U.S. economy have had an opposing impact on capital markets and have caused a number of market participants to sit out, healthcare companies continue to be active. Experts don’t believe macro fears will impact M&A. David Blume, Co-founder and Managing Director at Edgemont Capital stated, “I feel healthcare will be more resilient than most sectors, because the fundamentals that are driving M&A in healthcare aren’t as sensitive to overall macro-economic factors,” He continued with, “What’s driving M&A activity in pharma is the challenge of bringing new products to market in a cost effective way. Companies that are cash rich and product poor are looking for access to products, and use lower cost capital and cash reserves in order to do so.” Healthcare began 2015 on strong note, seeing $95.3 billion worth of deals in the first quarter of 2015, amounting for 12% of all the merger and acquisitions, seeing a 70% increase year over year. Next in the first half of 2015 the pharmaceutical sector saw approximately $221 billion in deals, almost three times the amount for the first six months of 2014. “Pharmaceutical companies have to buy, especially in the biotech arena for fear of their pipelines drying,” said Afsaneh Naimollah, Partner at Marlin & Associates. He concluded with, “The pharmaceutical companies have to consolidate not only for cost synergies, but to get their patent portfolios fortified.”
In today’s world, there are over 400 million people infected with hepatitis in all its forms. Last year, there were 1.3 million deaths recorded. And the world’s deadliest form of hepatitis is Hepatitis B, with over 240 million infections and approximately 780,000 deaths per year. This brings us to a biotech company that is looking to take the hepatitis B market by storm, SCIVAC THERAPEUTICS INC (OTCMKTS:SVACF). SciVac Therapeutics, Inc, has already begun to attract the big players such as former Chariman of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd (ADR) (NYSE:TEVA) and current CEO and Chairman of Opko Health Inc. (NYSE:OPK) Philip Frost. About a month ago Philip Frost closed an agreement with SciVac that brought the company public and immediately available to investors. The company’s flagship product hepatitis B (HBV) vaccine is called SciVac’s Sci-B-Vac has already been approved in 10 countries globally, and is proven to be 98% effective. If that’s not enough the vaccine has been shown to be 100% effective on newborns that were administered the treatment. The treatment has already been tested in 20 separate clinical trials on more than 5,000 patients.
Dr. Phillip Frost, states, SCIVAC THERAPEUTICS INC (OTCMKTS:SVACF) intends to pursue marketing approvals for Sci-B-Vac in the United States and other territories worldwide, initially focusing on at-risk populations such as End-Stage Renal Disease and HIV patients.” The company has a market cap of almost 150 million with current sales of about $10 million annually in vaccine. If by any chance Sci-B-Vac can successfully infiltrate pharma giant GlaxoSmithKline plc (ADR) (NYSE:GSK) vaccine Engerix market of over $1 billion a year to even 30%, that then equates to $300 million in sales annually for SciVac. With the proper support from biotech figurehead like Dr. Frost along evidence from clinical trials I think it’s fair to say SciVac’s vaccine has the potential of wiping hepatitis B from existence.
About SciVac Therapeutics Inc.
SciVac Therapeutics Inc., headquartered in Rehovot Israel, is in the business of developing, producing and marketing biological products for human healthcare. The Company’s flagship product, Sci‐B‐Vac™, is a recombinant 3rd generation hepatitis B vaccine. The Company is also developing an early-stage enzyme-based product designated S-Graft, which is a recombinant human deoxyribonuclease I, a repurposed biological therapeutic intended for the prevention and treatment of graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). The Company also offers contract development and manufacturing services to the life sciences and biotechnology markets.
Eanings Review: Rambus Inc. (NASDAQ:RMBS), Revlon Inc (NYSE:REV)
Revlon Inc(NYSE:REV) +2.5% after-hours after announcing that President and CEO Fabian Garcia is stepping down “to pursue other opportunities,” and Executive Vice Chair Paul Meister will oversee operations on an interim basis.
REV also says it expects Q4 revenues of $785M, below $801M from the year-earlier quarter but ahead of analyst consensus estimate of $743M, and a $60M-$80M net loss for the quarter due to a charge related to the recent tax law changes.
REV expects Q4 adjusted EBITDA of $110M-$115M vs. $115M analyst consensus.
CFO Chris Peterson also denies rumors that the company is considering a material asset transfer that would shield assets from lenders.
Rambus Inc.(NASDAQ:RMBS) shares are down 5.5% aftermarket following Q4 results that beat revenue estimates and met on EPS. In-line Q1 guidance (under ASC 605 accounting change) has revenue from $94M to $100M (consensus: $100.38M) and EPS from $0.17 to $0.23 (consensus: $0.18).
Revenue breakdown: Royalties, $77.9M (+10% Y/Y); Product, $8.5M (-27%); Contract and other revenue, $15.5M (+2%); Licensing billings, $76.6M (+18%).Key metrics: Non-GAAP operating margin, 31%; total operating expenses, $67.5M; cash and equivalents, $172.2M; cash flow from operations, $33.3M.
ADTRAN, Inc. (NASDAQ:ADTN) Hits New Lows After Issuing disappointing Earnings Forecast
ADTRAN, Inc.(NASDAQ:ADTN) slumped to a 52-week low after forecasting below consensus guidance for Q4, revising its revenue estimate downward to $125M from $155M-$165M earlier and seeing EPS of ~$0.01; analysts had expected EPS of ~$0.14 and revenue of $161.2M.
ADTN also projects Q1 to come in at roughly the same as Q4, misses analyst consensus of $167.5M.
CEO Tom Stanton says Q4 results have been hurt by a merger-related review, which ADTN expects to be completed in 60-90 days, and slowdown in the spending at a domestic Tier 1 customer.
MKM Partners analyst Michael Genovese believes the customer is CenturyLink (CTL -2%), which accounted for 24% of ADTN’s total sales in 2016.
The analyst thinks the weakness should prove temporary, adding that ADTN’s performance likely will accelerate into 2019 as the company stands to benefit from 5G spending; MKM trims its ADTN target price to $25 from $27 but keeps its Buy rating.
Big IPO Coming: Celator Pharmaceuticals Inc(NASDAQ:CPXX), Moleculin Biotech’s (MBRX)
Today at 10am Eastern, Moleculin Biotech ticker symbol MBRX will debut on the Nasdaq stock exchange and is being considered as one of the most highly anticipated IPO’s of 2016 by the street. The excitement and anticipation is arising from many experts saying that Moleculin Biotech’s (MBRX) drug annamycin is far superior to Celator Pharmaceuticals Inc(NASDAQ:CPXX) drug daunorubicin.
CPXX which has been bought out by Jazz Pharmaceuticals plc – Ordinary Shares(NASDAQ:JAZZ) for $1.5 Billion Dollars last week, share price ran from $1.6 to $31 in 2 months. Moleculin Biotech’s share structure is a 1.5m public float Priced at $6.