CPI Card Group (Nasdaq: PMTS) – Issuer of Pre-Paid Debit Cards

CPI Card Group Inc.

CPI Card Group Inc. (Nasdaq: PMTS) provides Financial Payment Card solutions as well as the design, production, data personalization, packaging and fulfilment of retail gift and loyalty cards.

It is the leading issuer of U.S. pre-paid debit cards. CPI Card Group Inc’s financial profile shows FY 2015 net sales of $374 million and a CAGR of 27%. It serves a large and growing market and participation of card payments is reported to increase from 38% in 2005 to 69% in 2018.

Growth and expansion

CPI Card Group Inc. is well placed for the long-term. It will pursue continued organic growth and expansion in the US card market and increase “wallet share” by cross selling new and value-added services. It will expand to new customers and offerings by innovating and enhancing the suite of solutions, expanding reach into the car market and selectively pursuing strategic acquisitions. CPI Card Group Inc. will develop new products and solutions to expand the scope of offerings, identify and develop new vertical market opportunities and selectively use acquisitions to strengthen the market position and maximise growth.

Results for the third quarter ended 30 September 2016.

Net sales for PMTS were $81.2 million, a decline of 24.6% compared to the previous year. Net income from continuing operations was $4 million ($0.07 per share) compared to $14.6 million ($0.19 per share) in the previous year. Adjusted net income from continuing operations was $6 million ($ 0.11 per share) compared to $17.3 million ($0.30 per share) on a pro forma basis for the previous year. Adjusted EBITDA was 17.8% (21.9% of net sales) compared to $32.5 million (30.2% of net sales) in the previous year. In the most recent quarter, $2.5 million was returned to PMTS stockholders through dividends.

The Bottom Line

The seven brokerages who are currently covering PMTS have assigned an average rating of “Hold”. Two analysts have rated PMTS as a “Sell”, four have rated PMTS as a “Hold” and one has rated it “Buy”. The average price target for PMTS is $6.38. The company has a market capitalisation of $218.41 million and a P/E ratio of 31.35. People considering an investment in PMTS should complete their own due diligence prior to making any purchases.

ALERT! Oragenics (Amex: OGEN) Price and Volume Spike

Oragenics Inc

Oragenics Inc (AMEX: OGEN) trading volume and price has spiked in recent days. Oragenics develops, markets and sells probiotics under the brand names Evora and ProBiora. The company has established two exclusive worldwide channel collaborations with Intrexon Corporation, a synthetic biology company which allow it access to Intrexon’s proprietary technologies with the goal of accelerating new antibiotic development. These antibiotics can work against resistant strains of bacteria and for the development of biotherapeutics for oral mucositis and other diseases and conditions of the oral cavity, throat, and esophagus. In addition to the Fast Track designation, AG013 has already been granted Orphan Drug status in the European Union.

FDA grants fast track designation for the development of AG013 for Oral Mucositis

Oragenics announced that the FDA has granted fast track designation for the product and the company expects to file An Investigational New Drug update and to initiate a phase 2 study in the United States and Europe in early 2017. The fast track is a process which facilitates the development and review of drugs to treat serious conditions and designed to respond to key unmet medical needs. By allowing for more frequent meetings and communication with the FDA. The company described this as another significant milestone in the path to provide a new therapy for cancer patients who developed the condition.

Oral mucositis is one of the most commonly reported side-effects associated with cancer chemotherapy – affecting up to 500,000 patients each year. If severe, these side-effects can affect the patient’s cancer treatment regime. At present, there is no approved drug to prevent the condition and current therapies are mainly comforting in nature – addressing only relief from symptoms but not treating the underlying causes.

Earlier developments

Oragenics had earlier announced that NYSE had accepted the plan to regain compliance with the continued listing standards by 10. November 2017, subject to periodic review for compliance. Oragenics trades under the ticker OGEN.

On 30 June 2016, the company announced the closing of a private placement of 9,045,679 shares of OGEN common stock to three accredited investors – raising gross proceeds of approximately $4.687 billion. The purchase price per OGEN share was $0.5159. The midpoint of the closing quote on June 29, 2016. The net proceeds, after payment of offering expenses, will be used for R&D activities and for general corporate purposes. The President and CEO, Dr Alan Joslin, said that the company was pleased that the largest shareholders continue to recognise its potential and its efforts to become the world leader in the use of novel antibiotics against infectious diseases and in the treatment for oral mucositis.

The bottom line on OGEN

The financials as of 30 September 30, 2016 showed cash and cash equivalents of $5.11 million and total current assets of $5.28 million against total shareholders equity of $ 4.48 million. The company earned no revenues and incurred total operating expenses of $2.02 million, leading to a loss from continuing operations of $2.02 million. OGEN has spiked in price and volume leading people knowledgeable with investing to revisit the company’s prospects. As always, complete your own due diligence before making any decisions on any investment.

Flash SNU Update! Zack’s adds NMIH to Strong Buy List!

Read update story here. NMIH

NMI Holdings Inc.

NMI Holdings Inc. (Nasdaq: NMIH), founded in 2012, provides private mortgage insurance; its subsidiary, National Mortgage Insurance Corporation (NMIC), is a mortgage insurance provider for loans purchased by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Mortgage insurance is usually purchased by mortgage lenders to protect themselves from losses related to loan defaults.

The mortgage insurance industry provides protection to lenders against default related losses on home mortgages and the federal charter for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac prohibit them from purchasing a loan with a low down-payment unless, credit enhancement is available. The necessary credit enhancement is provided by mortgage insurance.

The pricing strategy and the environment

New government eligibility requirements for private mortgage insurers became effective in 2016 and establishes risk-based capital requirements for all insured loans. To protect asset returns, NMI Holdings introduced new risk-based rates. Rates were increased for the low FICO/high LTV loans and decreased for high FICO/low LTV loans. Customers are reported to be responding favorably to the new rate structures.

The company follows a customer centric approach and offers coverage certainty after 12 months of on-time payments. This relief reduces repurchase risks. The strong capital base includes a strong balance sheet with no legacy liabilities and a low ratio of risk to capital. There is a strong emphasis on outstanding customer service and underwriters are deployed in the field rather than located in a centralized environment. Underwriting response times average eight hours compared to 24 to 48 hours for the competition and the modern new IT, web and mobile platforms provide for a streamlined and pleasing customer experience.

The industry and market overview

 The mortgage insurance industry has been marked by long periods of profitable operations and has demonstrated the ability to generate attractive return-on-equity figures. As a result, public markets often reward businesses in the industry with valuations which are at a premium to book value. The total market for mortgage origination is around $1.5 trillion of which 35% is insured by private mortgage insurers or FHA/VA. The total addressable market is estimated at $500 billion, of which 40% is written by private mortgage insurance and the target market is estimated at $200 billion.

NMI Holding’s loan portfolio is managed for valuation stability. Their portfolio holds no “layered-risk” loans, “no-doc”, sub-prime, interest only, or 100% LTV loans. The FICO distribution is now significantly better than it was from 2004 – 2008. Expected losses are now lower due to loan quality improvement.

NMI Holdings – By the Numbers

 In 2015, their business grew 260% to $12.4 billion. The company has a 6% market share in a $215 billion market. Profitability is expected in the second half of 2016.

Reported net income was $6.2 million, or $0.10 per share, compared to $2 million and $0.03 per share in the preceding quarter and a net loss of $4.8 million ($0.08 per share) in the same quarter of the previous year. Revenues for the quarter were $35.5 million, a growth of 20% from the preceding quarter and 141% from the previous year. Primary insurance in force was $28.2 billion, up 19% from the preceding quarter and up 166% over the previous year. As at the end of the quarter, cash and investments were $686 million – equivalent to $ 7.28 per share. In the first nine months of 2016, the company generated cash from operations of $52.2 million compared to $16.2 million for the previous year.

The bottom line on NMIH

FBR research analysts issued NMIH EPS estimate of $1.20 for FY 2018. They also have a “Buy” rating on NMIH. Other analysts also issued research ratings and BTIG re-issued a “Buy” rating with the target price of $10 and Zacks raised the rating on NMIH from “Hold” to “Buy” with a price target of $9.00. The average rating is currently “Buy”, and the consensus price target is $9.80.

As always, perform your won due diligence before investing in any stock.

Dataram Corp (Nasdaq: DRAM)

Dataram Corp. (Nasdaq: DRAM)

Dataram Corp. trades on the Nasdaq under the ticker DRAM. Dataram is a leading manufacturer of computer memory products and provides solutions that increase the performance and extend the life of computer hardware from well-known manufacturers such as Dell, Cisco, Fujitsu, HP, IBM, Lenovo and Oracle. Dataram’s memory products and solutions are sold worldwide to OEMs, distributors, value-added re-sellers and end users. In addition, the company manufactures and markets a line of Intel-approved memory products for sale to manufacturers and assemblers of embedded and original equipment. Seventy “Fortune 100” companies use their products and services. The corporate headquarters is located in Princeton, New Jersey and their manufacturing facility is located in the United States with sales offices in the United States, Europe and Asia.

Dataram has designed memory products for more than 50,000 systems with an established presence in the US and plans for expansion into Asia and Europe. It offers one of the most complete portfolios in the industry and the products range from energy efficient DDR4 modules to legacy SDR offerings. The growth strategy is to pursue organic and inorganic opportunities. This includes potential acquisitions such as US Gold Corp. Shipments, on a year-on-year basis, have been increased by more than 35% to an international customer base. The company has new leadership and improved corporate governance and enjoys a unique competitive advantage in its product offerings and services.

Between 1967 and 2008, the company was known as the gold standard for third-party memory providers but changed course in May 2008 and entered into non-synergistic and non-core growth opportunities. Over the last few months, the company realigned its mission to focus on pursuing its core business of memory products and solutions and delivering value to customers. The annual cash losses have been reduced from almost $3.8 million in FY 2015 to $0.4 million in FY 2016 before, non-cash and other charges and the projected revenue for FY 2016 is $25 million. Among the competitive advantages of the company are superior design and engineering services, including assistance with configuration, contract and flexible manufacturing to take care of special customer needs, including custom solutions, direct technical and engineering assistance and financial incentive programs, buyback, trade in/trade up, and cost analysis, allowing customers to optimise procurement and receive significant and measurable cost savings while allowing the management of end of life transition.

Important programs include lifetime warranty in which memory upgrades are warrantied to be free from defects in materials and workmanship, and conform to the manufacturer specifications for the system originally installed. Critical outreach liability insurance provides peace of mind to customers through prepaid technical support. The 24/7 on-site space program provides replacement for an immediate swap out in the case of memory failure. The prepaid on-site service support means that the service provider performs the determination of problems related to memory and resolving them using pre-purchased service hours. They have implemented a 24 x 7 technical support program and services the provider from inception to solution.

DRAM – outlook and growth opportunities

According to Markets and Markets, the non-volatile memory market is expected to touch $18.54 billion by the end of 2020 to with an estimated CAG are of 9.93% between 2016 and 2022. Statistical reports suggest that in 2010, revenue from DRAM sales came to $39.68 billion. Dataram’s immediate challenge is to increase channel inventory to counter sluggish demand. The balance of supply/capacity is underway and there are continuing declines in price. Demand is generally sluggish with variable enterprise demand while the cloud, mobile and OEM segments are more consistent. The longer-term challenges include the rebalancing of inventory levels to reflect market demand and advancement in technology. The low supply growth and the managed and balanced capacity, slowing technology migration and supplier consolidation are being countered by establishing deeper tier 1 supplier relationships, focused investment and calculated acquisitions. The company expects that over the next few months top-line revenue will grow to more than $50 million with improved margins, diversified offerings and increased capabilities.

The proposed acquisition of US Gold Corporation, which is a U.S.-based focused gold exploration and development company with two high potential projects are intended to diversify the activities of the company and reduce costs. The company believes that the business model will be diversified and risks will be mitigated, along with the strengthening of the balance sheet because US Gold has no debt and cash in the region of $4 million. The acquisition also improves the margins of the memory business because costs will be shared, thus reducing the duplication of shared services.

The bottom line

One reason for investors and potential investors to be pleased with DRAM stock is the announcement from the company that it has regained compliance for continued Nasdaq listing removing a major uncertainty through a reverse split of the stock. DRAM closed at $1.09 EOD November 18, 2016. As always, perform your own due diligence before making any investments.

Flash Update: Cemtrex (CETX) Gets Big News!

Since appearing in StockNewsUnion on Oct 19th, Cemtrex (Nasdaq: CETX) has been the recipient of some good news. On November 16th, 2016 Cemtrex announced that it has been listed, for the third time, in Deloitte’s Technology Fast 500™. According to Deloitte’s website – “Deloitte’s Technology Fast 500 award winners are selected based on percentage fiscal year revenue growth over a three-year period. The ranking is compiled from applications submitted directly to the Technology Fast 500 web site and public company database research conducted by Deloitte LLP.”

Per reports, Cemtrex has achieved 368% growth over the last four years. Yahoo!Finance reports that Centrex Chairman and CEO Saagar Govil commented ““We are delighted to be honored by Deloitte with this recognition by the 2016 Technology Fast 500™ ranking.  Our organic growth continues to be strong, as we focus on expanding niches within our overall end-markets like the automotive, medical, industrial, and wearable industries. At the same time, our acquisition strategy is designed to strengthen our position in these areas and enter additional niches that have significant growth prospects.”

In other news that may benefit Cemtrex, on November 2, 2016 China announced that it will put in place a carbon cap-and-trade program that could double the global carbon trade market that figures so prominently into Cemtrex’s future business plans. Sources on the street say that shareholders of CETX are excited about this news. Cemtrex owns proprietary technology under the trademark MCDR. This technology economically destroys methane gas and, at the same time, generates carbon credits for the user. Cemtrex claims that the $2 million cost can be recouped by a licensee within four years.

Lastly, Centrex is said to have entered into an acquisition agreement to purchase a Silicon Valley based electronics manufacturing firm. Cemtrex’s pending acquisition of the manufacturer is considered a strategic milestone in the history of the firm by Cemtrex management.

CETX closed at $4.30 as of close on November 17, 2016.

Acura Pharmaceuticals Addressing Medication Abuse and Misuse

Acura Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Acura Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ACUR) is a pharmaceutical company that addresses medication abuse and misuse. It has developed three technologies

  1. Oxaydo Tablets – an approved and immediate-release (IR) oxycodone product;
  2. Nexafed – Sinus Pressure and Pain; and
  3. Limitx – impedes the release of active drug ingredients in cases where too many tablets were taken on purpose or by accident.

Financial results for the second quarter FY 2016

For the period ended June 30, 2016, Acura Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced results of a net loss of $3.3 million for the second quarter of 2016 ($0.28 per diluted share) compared to a net loss of $2.7 million ($0.27 per diluted share) for the same period of the previous year. Revenues for the quarter were $257,000 compared to $341,000 in the previous year. Research and development expenses were $1.4 million for the quarter compared to $0.5 million for the same period of the previous year.

As of August 5, 2016, the unrestricted balance of cash and cash equivalents came to approximately $3.4 million.

ACUR Developments

Acura Pharmaceuticals Inc. has entered a licensing agreement with KemPharm, Inc. (NASDAQ: KMPH), a clinical-stage specialty pharmaceutical company, by which the company will provide its proprietary Aversion® Technology to KemPharm to use with its current and in-development immediate release (IR) opioid product candidates. The technology is a patented combination of pharmaceutical ingredients which provides abuse deterrent features and benefits for orally administered pharmaceutical drugs. The agreement provides for an upfront cash payment of $3.5 million and gives KemPharma development and commercialization rights for up to 3 product candidates which contain two opioid products. Additional payments are to be made if an option to use more than the three products is exercised. The company is also eligible to receive royalties on commercial sales at a low single digit rate of all products developed under the agreement. The President and CEO of KemPharm Travis Mickle said that the agreement offered potential benefits and will help the company to bridge the regulatory approval process between current products.

The need for abuse deterrent products and the market opportunity

 The misuse and abuse of prescription drugs and opioid analgesics is a significant problem in society that has been described as a top priority by leaders at the national level. The company’s abuse deterrent technology platforms can produce potential benefits in combating the abuse of opioid analgesics, non-opioid drugs and nasal decongestants.

In the case of opioid analgesics, many physicians have indicated concern about the misuse of prescribed medications for non-medical uses and abuse by their patients. Several independent organisations have estimated that the potential cost impact to insurers by abusers is $14,000 higher than non-abusers. The total cost of the abuse could be up to $72.5 billion every year. In the case of nasal decongestants, a widely-used product is pseudo-ephedrine which can be used to produce methamphetamine, which is an illicit drug estimated to be abused by 1.1 million Americans every year.

Bottom line on ACUR

A survey of market experts forecasts an EPS of $0.235 for Acura Pharmaceuticals, Inc. The two brokerages who cover the stock have an average price target of $8. As of November 11, 2016, ACUR closed at $1.00.







Update! Breaking News on MabVax (Nasdaq: MBVX)

11/14/2016 UPDATE!

Click for updated news – MabVax reports on Phase I clinical trials

MabVax Therapeutics Holdings Inc

MabVax Therapeutics Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:MBVX) is a clinical stage biotechnology company focused on the development of antibody-based products to help in the treatment of cancer. It has discovered a pipeline of human monoclonal antibody products based on the protective immune responses from patients who have been immunised against targeted cancer with MabVax’s proprietary vaccines.

One of the positive aspects of the HuMab-5B1 antibody is that it is fully human – it was discovered from the immune response of cancer patients vaccinated with an antigen-specific vaccine during a Phase I trial at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK). In preclinical research, the 5B1 antibody has demonstrated a high degree of efficiency and the antigen targeted is expressed on more than 90% of pancreatic cancers making the antibody potentially broadly applicable to most patients suffering from this type of cancer. MabVax’s two lead antibody clinical programs, currently in Phase I clinical trials, utilize HuMab-5B1 as a naked antibody (MVT-5873) and as an immuno-PET imaging agent (MVT-2163). Importantly, MabVax also has the exclusive license to the therapeutic vaccines from MSK.

The company has announced the commencement of common stock trading on NASDAQ under the ticker MBVX, as well as the pricing of a public offering worth $8.625 million in the form of common stock and series F preferred stock. The total expected gross proceeds are before underwriting discount and expenses. The company also is expecting a reverse split of its common stock in the ratio of 1 for 7.4. The purpose of the reverse stock split and public offering is to enable the company to satisfy the minimum stockholder equity and stock price requirements of NASDAQ for uplisting and provide capital for the clinical development plans.

The bottom line on MBVX

Sources believe the available indications are moving with this company in a positive trend. The cash on hand is in excess of $ 10 million as of 2016 and the recent uplisting on NASDAQ (MBVX) has made many people bullish about its prospects with some analysts expecting to see a target price of $18.00. MBVX was trading in the $4.00 handle as of this writing. Investors considering adding this stock to their portfolio should consider that early-stage drug development companies are relatively high risk.

Alphabet’s Google Says European Commission Antitrust Case Could Hurt Open Mobile Operating Systems

Alphabet’s (GOOG, GOOGL) Google said Thursday that the European Commission’s antitrust case against the Android operating system could ultimately hurt open mobile operating systems and favor closed ones, such as Apple’s (AAPL) iOS.

Senior VP and General Counsel Kent Walker said in a blog post that Google has filed a response to the Commission’s statement of objections over how the company manages Android compatibility and distribute its own apps.

Walker said the Android system “carefully balances the interests of users, developers, hardware makers, and mobile network operators. Android hasn’t hurt competition, it’s expanded it.”

He also said the Commission’s case is based on claims that Android doesn’t compete with the iOS, which is not how Google sees it. He also addressed the argument that Google shouldn’t offer some Google apps as part of a suite.

“No manufacturer is obliged to preload any Google apps on an Android phone. But we do offer manufacturers a suite of apps so that when you buy a new phone you can access a familiar set of basic services,’ Walker said. “Finally, distributing products like Google Search together with Google Play permits us to offer our entire suite for free. This free distribution…lowers prices for phone makers and consumers, while still letting us sustain our substantial investment in Android and Play.”

Walker said the Commissions approach would upset the “fragile” balance of open-source platforms, leading to less innovation, less choice, less competition and higher prices.

“It would be a bad outcome for developers, for phone makers and carriers, and, most critically, for consumers. That’s the case we are making to the Commission in our filing today,” Walker said.