Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. (ACOR - Free Report) reported first-quarter 2019 loss per share of 56 cents, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 97 cents. However, the figure came in against the year-ago earnings of 14 cents.
Acorda generated total revenues of $44.1 million in the first quarter, comprehensively beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $36.6 million. However, sales tumbled a massive 58.4% year over year due to lower sales of Ampyra.
Shares of Acorda were up almost 2% in pre-market trading, probably owing to better-than-expected earnings result. However, the stock has plunged 35.5% so far this year versus the industry’s increase of 4%.
Quarter in Detail
Last December, the FDA approved Acorda’s Parkinson's disease (PD) drug Inbrija. Following this nod, the product became the first and the only approved inhaled levodopa for treating OFF periods in patients suffering Parkinson’s and receiving a carbidopa / levodopa regimen. Inbrija was launched in February this year. It is also under review in Europe with a decision expected before the end of 2019.
The medicine generated sales of $1.3 million in the reported quarter. The company believes that it will pick up sales in the future quarters, having received an encouraging feedback, both from doctors and patients since its launch. An approximately 2,000 prescription request forms for Inbrija were received through April 2019.
Notably, majority of Acorda’s net product revenues were drawn from the company’s multiple sclerosis (MS) drug, Ampyra, which raked in sales of $40.1 million in the quarter under review. Sales of Ampyra tanked 61% year over year and 37.5% sequentially due to generic competition. Last September, Ampyra lost its exclusivity and generics entered the market including Mylan's (MYL - Free Report) authorized generic version.
Acorda believes that Ampyra sales will see a sharp decline in the quarters ahead in 2019.
Successful commercialization of Inbrija is imperative for long-term growth at Acorda, especially as generic competition looms large on Ampyra. Although Inbrija is off to a positive start, it still remains to be seen if the product can deliver the desired results and be a perfect replacement for Ampyra in the long run.
Meanwhile, royalty revenues decreased 12.5% to $2.8 million in the quarter.
Acorda’s research and development (R&D) expenses (excluding share-based compensation expenses) were $15.3 million, reflecting a deterioration of 47.1% year over year.
Selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses (excluding share-based compensation expenses) were $49.9 million, representing a 15% year-over-year rise.
Acorda had $343.3 million cash, cash equivalents and investments as of March 31, 2019 compared with $445.6 as of Dec 31, 2018.
The company no longer provides any outlook for Ampyra due to its waning revenues, induced by the entrance of generics.
The company expects full-year R&D and SG&A expenses (excluding share-based compensation) in the band of $70-$80 million and $200-$210 million, respectively.
Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider
Acorda currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell).
Better-ranked stocks from the healthcare sector include Merus N.V. (MRUS - Free Report) and PDL BioPharma, Inc. (PDLI - Free Report) , both sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Merus’ loss per share estimates have been narrowed 28% for 2019 and 30.7% for 2020 over the past 60 days. The stock has rallied 11.9% year to date.
PDL BioPharma’s earnings estimates have been revised 100% upward for 2019 and 30% for 2020 over the past 60 days. The stock has gained 10.3% year to date.
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