Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL)

Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL) Beats Estimates but Drops

Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL)

Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL) stock is down over 16%, on heavy volume, after the biotechnology company reported Q3 2017 earnings. Vericel’s net loss for the quarter ended September 30, 2017 was (-$5.4) million, or (-$0.16) per share, compared to a net loss of (-$6.7) million, or (-$0.38) per share, for the same period in 2016. The Q3 loss was actually better than the analyst’s consensus estimate of a loss of (-$0.17) according to reports made available by the NASDAQ Markets.

Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL)

Cambridge, MA-based Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL) is a commercial-stage biopharmaceutical company that develops and commercializes cellular therapies for use in the treatment of patients with severe diseases and conditions. It markets three cell therapy products, including Carticel and MACI, which are used for the treatment of cartilage defects in the knee; and Epicel, a permanent skin replacement that is used for the treatment of patients with deep-dermal or full-thickness burns. Vericel has also developed ixmyelocel-T, which is in Phase IIb clinical trial, a patient-specific multicellular therapy for the treatment of advanced heart failure due to ischemic dilated cardiomyopathy.

Vericel Prior Business Update

One year ago, VCEL shares actually touched the $2 mark, then went on a slow, steady rise to eventually trade over $6 during the first few days of October. Then, on October 5, Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL) produced a business update that sent shares reeling. That business update included the news that the FDA indicated that Vericel should plan to conduct at least one additional adequate and well-controlled clinical study to support a Biologics License Application for their drug candidate ixmyelocel-T. Since that announcement, shares slid and met fierce resistance at the $4.50 level – putting any rally to rest.

VCEL Stock Performance

Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL) has, over the past four years, experienced higher sales figures and shrinking EPS losses. In 2012, the company posted an EPS loss of (-$16.25). That loss shrank to (-$1.18) for 2016. Meanwhile, sales were $28.8 million in 2014, and that number rose to $54.4 for 2016.

Despite VCEL shares losing over 12% during the past month, the biotechnology shares still are up over 43% year-to-date, and are up around 100% for the year. Of the four investment firms that follow Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL), three rate VCEL shares as a “Strong Buy” while one rates the shares as a “Buy”. Their consensus, one-year price target is $6.34.

I have no positions in any of the stocks mentioned, and have no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. All information, including any data, is provided without any guarantees of accuracy.

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About the author: Steve Clark is a 23-year Wall St professional with stints in M&A, risk management, and algorithm trading. Steve keeps his head in the game by looking for, and writing about, small companies that often get overlooked by the big investment firms.

Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL) Q4 2016 Revenue At $16.5 Million

Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL)

Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL) a key developer of expanded autologous cell treatments for the cure of patients with grave diseases and conditions, released financial report and business highlights for Q4 2016.

Total net revenues in the reported quarter came at around $16.5 million and included almost $12.7 million of Carticel® net revenues and nearly $3.8 million of Epicel® net revenues. Total Epicel and Carticel net revenues in 4Q2016 increased about 8% over the same quarter in 2015.

For the fiscal year closed December 31, 2016, total net revenue came at around $54.4 million, comprising Carticel net revenues of almost $38.9 million and about Epicel net revenues of $15.5 million.  Total Epicel and Carticel net revenues for 2016 surged almost 8% compared to total Epicel and Carticel net revenues for 2015.

The update

Nick Colangelo, the CEO and President of Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL), reported that in 2016 they created the key drivers for long-term growth of the firm by achieving two major regulatory milestones with the nod of a pediatric indication for Epicel and the nod of MACI.

These notable approvals, combined with marketing infrastructure and our expanded sales and a strong balance sheet, positions the firm for robust revenue growth in the coming years. Gross profit for the quarter closed December 31, 2016 came at $8.9 million compared to $8.2 million for the quarter closed December 31, 2015.

Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL) reported that R&D expenses for the quarter closed December 31, 2016 came at $4.3 million versus $7.4 million for the same period in 2015. The drop in fourth-quarter research and development costs in mainly due to higher R&D and regulatory costs incurred in 4Q2015 linked with the MACI®, Biologics License Application and the Humanitarian Device Exemption supplement filed in December 2015 to review the labeled indications for application of Epicel, offset in part by increased clinical trial costs linked with the open-label crossover extension part of the ixCELL-DCM trial.

S,G&A costs for the quarter closed December 31, 2016 came at $7.9 million compared to $5.7 million for the same period in 2015. This increase in S,G&A expenses in 2016 is mainly due to the costs linked with Vericel’s latest provider of patient reimbursement and support services for MACI and Carticel and additional facility fees, personnel costs, professional services and technology infrastructure linked to preparing for the commercial release of MACI.

In the last trading session, the stock price of Vericel Corp (NASDAQ:VCEL) traded in a narrow range and closed flat at $2.85.

3/14/2017
Ticker Symbol VCEL
Last Price a/o 3:21 PM EST  $1.75
Average Volume  165.85K
Market Cap (mlns)  40.76M
Shares Outstanding (mlns) 23.29M
Share Float (mlns) 22.53M
Inside Ownership 15.00%
Short Float 4.80%
Short Interest Ratio 6.53
Quarterly Return -7.89%
YTD Return -10.26%
Year Return -83.19%

I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 96 hours. All information, or data, is provided with no guarantees of accuracy.

About the author: Monica Gray has an undergraduate degree in Accounting and an MBA – earned with Honors. She has six years of experience in the financial markets and has been a securities analyst for the past two years.