Marrone Bio Innovations, Inc. (MBII - Free Report) posted a net loss of $8.5 million or 27 cents per share in third-quarter 2017, compared with a loss of $7.2 million or 29 cents per share a year ago. Loss per share for the quarter was wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 24 cents.
Gross margin for the quarter was 40.9%, an improvement from 31.4% recorded a year ago.
Revenues & Shipments
Marrone Bio’s revenues went up 16% year over year to $4.2 million in the quarter, but fell short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $5 million. The top line growth in the quarter was driven by growth of Venerate, a bio-insecticide, which is rapidly gaining traction.
The company witnessed a number of catalyst during the quarter including the receipt of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registration for its new bio-fungicide MBI-110, distribution agreements for Africa and completion of its Grandevo WDG granulation line.
However, the company noted that Hurricanes Irma and Maria hurt its sales in Florida and Puerto Rico. Unfavorable weather conditions also reduced the number of expected sprays in several of the company’s major markets in the quarter.
Product shipments were flat year over year at $3.1 million in the quarter.
Marrone Bio ended the quarter with cash and cash equivalents of around $3.7 million, down around 77% year over year. Long-term debt was around $21 million, essentially flat year over year. Net cash used in operations was roughly $14.4 million for the first nine months of 2017, an improvement from $18.4 million of cash used for the same period a year ago.
Marrone Bio said that it has made a significant progress in penetrating the United States and overseas markets and also remains positive on the long-term outlook of its business. The company also expects its ongoing manufacturing process improvement initiatives in R&D to continue to contribute to an improvement in margins moving ahead.
Marrone Bio has underperformed the industry it belongs to over a year. The company’s shares have lost around 50% over this period compared with the industry’s gain of 29.6% over the same period.
Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider
Marrone Bio is a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock.
Better-ranked companies in the basic materials space include Westlake Chemical Corporation (WLK - Free Report) , Ingevity Corporation (NGVT - Free Report) and Kraton Corporation (KRA - Free Report) , all sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Westlake has an expected long-term earnings growth of 8.4%. Its shares are up roughly 66% year to date.
Ingevity has an expected long-term earnings growth of 12%. The stock has gained around 37% year to date.
Kraton has an expected earnings growth of 25.4% for the current year. Its shares are up roughly 70% year to date.
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