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Pacira (PCRX) Q2 Loss Wider than Expected, Revenues Miss

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Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (PCRX - Free Report) incurred second-quarter 2017 loss of 29 cents per share (including the impact of stock-based compensation), wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate loss of 28 cents and the year-ago loss of 2 cents. Higher costs and soft revenues hurt earnings in the quarter.

Revenues rose 1.9% year over year to $70.9 million and missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $74 million. Revenues were below estimates as higher Exparel revenues were offset by lower other product and collaboration revenues. However, the company remains encouraged by the progress of its Johnson & Johnson (JNJ - Free Report) partnership to co-promote Exparel (entered into in Jan 2017), with their sales and medical education teams actively supporting Exparel in the orthopedic space.

Pacira’s share price has increased 18.8% year to date, compared with the Zacks classified industry’s gain of 1.7%.

Quarter in Detail

Pacira’s top line comprises product revenues, collaborative licensing and milestone revenues, and royalty revenues. Exparel, generated revenues of $69.8 million, up 6.1% year over year, but DepoCyt(e) and other product revenues came in at $0.4 million, down 81.1%.

Collaborative licensing and milestone revenues were down 90.4% to $0.1 million. Royalty revenues were $0.7 million, up 11.4%.

Research and development (R&D) expenses ((including the impact of stock-based compensation)were up 101.4% to $18.9 million, while selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses increased 9.4% to $39.6 million.

Recent Developments

The company remains on track to resubmit its supplemental new drug application, (sNDA), to the FDA later in 2017, seeking expansion of the EXPAREL label to include the indication of  administration via nerve block.The sNDA will be based on two pivotal efficacy studies. The company believes that the data from these two studies will meet the requirements of the FDA as stated in the complete response letter (issued in Mar 2015).

Pacira is also evaluation Exparel for the treatment of total knee arthroplasty (TKA). In Mar 2017, the company announced positive topline data from the this Phase IV study. The study met its co-primary endpoints for postsurgical pain and opioid reduction against an active comparator- bupivacaine.  The Exparel group achieved a statistically significant reduction in under the curve (AUC) of visual analog scale (VAS) scores compared to those who did not receive Exparel.

2017 Outlook

Pacira reiterated its guidance for 2017. It projects Exparel sales in the range of $290 million to $310 million. R&D expenses (excluding stock-based compensation) are expected in the band of $50 million to $60 million. SG&A expenses (excluding stock based compensation are anticipated to be in $145–$155 million range.Also, stock-based compensation is expected to be in the range of $30 -$35 million.

Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Pacira currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Better-ranked pharma stocks in the same space include Exelixis, Inc. (EXEL - Free Report) and Enzo Biochem, Inc. . Both Exelixis and Enzo Biochem sport a Zacks Rank#2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Exelixis’ pulled off positive earnings surprises in all the trailing four quarters, with an average beat of 512.11%. The share price of the company has increased 78.6% year to date.

Enzo Biochem’s loss per share estimates narrowed from 12 cents to 7 cents for 2017 and from 11 cents to 3 cents for 2018, over the last 60 days. The company delivered positive earnings surprises in all the trailing four quarters, with an average beat of 55.83%. The share price of the company has increased 59.6% year to date.

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