Beximco Pharma (BXP.L): Third quarter results for 2020 | Silence Therapeutics (SLN.L): Business update
Companies: Beximco Pharmaceuticals Silence Therapeutics
The year 2019 marked a major turnaround for Silence, as it both ramped up its development activity, with the advancement of SLN124 for iron overload and SLN360 for cardiovascular disease, and made massive partnering efforts. We have seen the fruits of this business development in the form of three partnering deals with major pharmaceutical companies Mallinckrodt, Takeda and AstraZeneca. Together all these efforts demonstrate the value of the company’s siRNA platform and intellectual property.
Companies: Silence Therapeutics
Silence Therapeutics (SLN.L): Final results for 2019 | IXICO plc (IXI.L): Substantial contract win and trading update
Companies: Silence Therapeutics IXICO
Silence Therapeutics (SLN.L): COVID-19 Partnership | Tiziana Life Sciences (TILS.L): Development of TZLS-50 for COVID-19 | Advanced Oncotherapy (AVO.L): £15m fundraise and Covid-19 update
Companies: SLN TILS AVO
Companies: TILS IMO BONH ESYS CHAR VLS DIS SLN WINE AVO
Silence Therapeutics announced on 25 March 2020 that it has signed a collaboration agreement with AstraZeneca to develop novel drugs for cardiovascular, renal, metabolic and respiratory diseases. The deal includes an upfront of $60m, $20m in equity investment, and for each of the planned targets $400m in milestones, and high single- to low double-digit royalties. Additionally, the company announced that it would elevate SLN360 to the status of lead asset and expects to file an IND later in 2020 and to have interim results in mid-2021.
Novacyt (NCYT.L): Agreements struck with Bruker and Yourgene | Polarean Imaging (POLX.L): Change of General Meeting Venue | Silence Therapeutics (SLN.L): Strategic collaboration with AstraZeneca (AZN.L)
Companies: NCYT POLX SLN AZN
Beowulf Mining* (BEM LN) – Co-investment with Vadar in exploration in Kosovo | Centamin (CEY LN) – No Cases of Covid19 – supply chain still operating normally | Cora Gold* (CORA LN) – COVID-19 related update | Firestone Diamonds (FDI LN) – Suspension of operations at Liqhobong | SolGold* (SOLG LN) – Implementation of virus control measures | Tertiary Minerals* (TYM LN) – Managing Director moving on | Versarien (VRS LN) - Joint venture agreement signed with Young-Graphene Technology in China | Novacyt (NCYT.L): Agreements struck with Bruker and Yourgene | Polarean Imaging (POLX.L): Change of General Meeting Venue | Silence Therapeutics (SLN.L): Strategic collaboration with AstraZeneca (AZN.L)
Companies: BEM CEY CORA FDI SOLG TYM VRS NCYT POLX SLN
Inspecs, a UK designer, manufacturer and distributor of eyewear frames to global retail chains announces its intention to IPO onto AIM raising £94m with a market cap of £138m. Admission expected 27th February. FY Dec 2018 numbers show revenue of $57m and underlying EBITDA of $11m
Companies: FDP YGEN AVO FIPP FEN SLN SHRE ARCM AEG VLX
We are initiating coverage of Silence Therapeutics (SLN), a developer of siRNA drugs for diseases that can be genetically targeted. Silence has a proprietary platform for developing siRNA therapeutics, the strength of which was highlighted by preclinical development deals with Mallinckrodt and Takeda (details below). The company will also be re-entering the clinic in Q120 with SLN124, its own drug for iron overload. We are initiating with a valuation of £345m or 440p per share.
Research Tree provides access to ongoing research coverage, media content and regulatory news on Silence Therapeutics.
We currently have 28 research reports from 4
A number of REITs have the ability to thrive in current market conditions and thereafter. Not only do they hold assets that will remain in strong demand, but they have focus and transparency. The leases and underlying rents are structured in a manner to provide long visibility, growth and security. Hardman & Co defined an investment universe of REITs that we considered provided security and “safer harbours”. We introduced this universe with our report published in March 2019: “Secure income” REITs – Safe Harbour Available. Here, we take forward the investment case and story. We point to six REITs, in particular, where we believe the risk/reward is the most attractive.
Companies: AGY ARBB ARIX BUR CMH CLIG DNL HAYD NSF PCA PIN PXC PHP RE/ RECI SCE SHED VTA
The announcement announced today highlights the potential breadth of the KidneyIntelX platform, opening up new routes to expand data inputs and test utility, and create opportunities alongside pharmacological therapy as a companion diagnostic. The first agreement with the University of Michigan adds an additional 800 chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients (adding to Mount Sinai’s 1,500 patients and the University of Groningen’s 3,500 patients) to analysis the performance of KidneyIntelX in different settings. This will ultimately carry additional sway with healthcare centres, regulators, and payers. The option to exclusively license a new urinary biomarker, urinary Epithelial Growth Factor (uEGF), shows the potential to add additional biomarkers and body fluids into the platform to further enhance the prognostic performance of KidneyIntelX. We understand there is a relatively immaterial upfront payment to access this new biobank, and a similar immaterial cash payment to gain the biomarker license option with additional milestones and standard tiered royalties payable if exercised. The second data sharing agreement with a major undisclosed pharma partner highlights KidneyIntelX’s potential use as a companion diagnostic (e.g. for SGLT2 inhibitors) and the potential to use the test multiple times to monitor drug response. This builds on work being conducted in Groningen with data expected H2 CY’20. Ultimately, pharmaceutical collaborations could drive additional long-term value creation and may open opportunities for lucrative licensing and M&A deals. At this juncture we make no changes to our forecasts and eagerly await further updates. We reiterate our positive stance on Renalytix.
Companies: Renalytix AI
Renalytix’s US IPO filing document went live overnight (having previously been filed confidentially). Whilst there are no details on size of offering, but the document is rich with details of the use of proceeds which we encourage UK investors to read. We are doing the same and will update our views in due course. Associated with the US filing document, another release this morning announces the publication of a circular, and outlines details for a new General Meeting on the 13 July 2020 to approve the issue of new shares, as well as board changes if the US IPO goes ahead. Namely, Julian Baines (Non-executive Chair) and Richard Evans (NED and Audit committee Chair) are stepping down from the board, Christopher Mills will assume the role of interim chair whilst a search for a successor is conducted.
Futura Medical confirms the timelines for the regulatory filings for MED3000, its novel erectile dysfunction (ED) treatment, are on track. Dialogues with both the US FDA and European Notified Body have been constructive. The EU Notified Body has begun its review of the supporting documentation and the FDA filing is still expected by end-Q320. There have been no COVID-19 related delays but, in our view, these remain a consideration. We assume the review processes will take a minimum of 12 months in both cases, so have approvals pencilled in for Q421. Commercialisation discussions are expected to start in earnest once the status of the regulatory approvals is known. Our DCF-based model, using conservative assumptions, values Futura Medical at £153.8m, equivalent to 60.9p a share.
Companies: Futura Medical
Today Ergomed held its annual general meeting (AGM). As expected, no new financial details were provided, although the executive chairman released a statement with a general business update. Q120 trading was good with ‘solid overall growth in revenue’ and cash generation ‘remained strong’. In Q220, Ergomed continued to grow the order book across the business and maintained its ‘revenue growth trend’. Its staff successfully adapted to remote working conditions and no employees were made redundant or furloughed. The H120 trading update will be released in July 2020 as usual, but Ergomed stated within its AGM update (June 10) that it is confident the results will be ‘in line with current market expectations’.
With CHF13bn ($14bn) annual sales, Roche is a dominant force in the global diagnostics market. Interestingly, in recent years, most diagnostics majors have witnessed material re-ratings – also a function of increased M&A euphoria. Now, in the backdrop of COVID-19, Roche has also emerged as a prominent player on the testing front. With big pharmas moving away from (low-growth) non-pharma offerings, is it time for Roche to consider unlocking value from Diagnostics?
Companies: Roche Holding
We are encouraged by today’s Phase IIa data from the hRPC programme in Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) and continued clinical meaningful improvement in the treated eye vs. the untreated eye of 8.9 and 8.8 letters at 6 and 12 months, respectively. All patients have now reached 6 months of treatment, although one patient now has reached 18 months and continues to show a highly encouraging 16.0 letter improvement vs. the untreated eye. We believe analysing the 8 patients who had a successful surgical operation, and excluding the two patients who had surgical complications, is the most appropriate dataset. The recovery in eyesight of one of the two patients who had surgical complications is good news, but we exclude from our analysis. Whilst it is possible, we think this recovery is unlikely to be the result of the hRPC therapy. As previously announced, nine additional patients are expected to be recruited into the Phase IIa trial and sufficient data is expected to be available from the trial to seek approval in H2 2021 to commence a single pivotal clinical study in RP. We view today’s results to be supportive of ReNeuron’s investment thesis and the new primary focus on RP. We make no changes to our forecasts or valuation analysis, and look forward to further updates from the hRPC programme.
Companies: Reneuron Group
Hemogenyx (HEMO.L): Agreement with GlobalCo (from Friday) | ReNeuron Group (RENE.L): Positive data from ongoing Phase 2 retinal cell therapy trial
Companies: Hemogenyx Pharmaceuticals Reneuron Group
AVO’s goal is to deliver an affordable and novel proton therapy (PT) system, called LIGHT, based on state-of-the-art technology developed originally at the worldrenowned CERN. Over the past two years, the project has been significantly derisked through important technical milestones. AVO is working on the verification and validation phase, prior to LIGHT being used on the first patients to support CE certification. A recent equity issue, new loan facilities and some commercial announcements earlier in 2020 highlight the increasing confidence that is building in AVO’s ability to achieve its goal to deliver LIGHT in the near future.
Companies: Advanced Oncotherapy
Cambridge Cognition ("COG") has provided a trading update for the 6 months to 30 June and presented its growth strategy at an excellent Capital Markets Day. The Group continues to build on an impressive H1 2020, announcing additional contract wins that take the order intake to £4.9m (+88% vs H1 2019). COG is currently 'seeing unprecedented demand' for its solutions which enable pharmaceutical companies to continue clinical trials even while participants are unable to physically visit clinical trial sites.
Companies: Cambridge Cognition
Diaceutics is launching a cloud based diagnostics commercialisation platform for the precision medicine market that will bring significant functional gains to customers and create meaningful internal efficiencies. The company has raised £20.5m gross in an equity Placing of new ordinary shares to fund the ongoing development of both the business and the new platform.
We are initiating coverage on specialist pharmaceutical services provider Ergomed. We believe it should prove relatively resilient during the COVID-19 crisis and has the fundamentals in place to execute its growth strategy. Ergomed announced impressive audited numbers for FY19, with revenue up 26% to £68.3m and EBITDA up 5.5x to £12.5m. The FY19 announcement is effectively Ergomed’s fourth profit upgrade for FY19 and a small beat on recently reset FY19 expectations. Ergomed trades at a discounted EV/EBITDA of 10.1x vs the contract research outsourcing (CRO) sector average of 11.5x (FY20). We value Ergomed at £186m or 399p/share. Ergomed’s strong organic growth is benefiting from a clear strategic focus on high growth pharma sectors, margin control and order book growth (up 15% to £125m in FY19, giving 90% visibility to 2020).
Bioventix delivered a strong set of interims, with revenues up 21%. Given the 9% decline in operating expenses, this resulted in a 31% increase in adjusted EBITDA, with adjusted pre-tax profit also rising 31% to £4.4m (52% of full-year forecasts) and adjusted EPS up 29% to 69.4p. An interim dividend of 36p was declared (+20%) with net cash at period end of £5.5m. Growth was driven by both Vitamin D antibody sales/royalties (+c.25%), its portfolio of other antibodies (+c.12%) and a more meaningful contribution from troponin. Given the inevitable disruption that COVID-19 will have to some testing volumes (although tests such as NTproBNP are likely to benefit from high risk COVID patients), we leave forecasts unchanged, confident that the strong H1 and weaker sterling in H2 should offset any potential H2 trading shortfall. We leave our forecasts unchanged and reiterate our 3750p target price. At this level, the stock would trade on a 30x FY 2020 P/E with a free cashflow yield of 3.1x
A continued strong recovery in the important China and US markets means group revenues are expected to be significantly ahead of expectations. The strong revenue performance and improving gross margins has also delivered EBITDA significantly ahead of consensus expectations. The outlook remains robust, supported by ongoing recovery in China in particular and a strong order book gives good visibility over H1’21 revenues. We prudently leave outer year forecasts unchanged for now, but view the sensitivity as being to the upside, with potentially material medium-longer term upside from the vaccines currently in development (but not in forecasts). On an FY21 multiple of 11.2x EBITDA, the valuation is undemanding.
Companies: Eco Animal Health Group
New York state approval is a pivotal moment for Renalytix. Approval facilitates the launch of KidneyIntelX with launch partner Mount Sinai and progressively derisks the investment hypothesis. Understandably with Mount Sinai in the heart of the NYC Covid-19 health pandemic, testing and first commercial revenues is now set to begin in calendar Q3 2020 (vs Q2 2020) once the integration of KidneyIntelX into the Mount Sinai electronic health record is completed. Renalytix is now licensed to provide KidneyIntelX testing services in 47 states in the US, with the remaining licenses pending in calendar 2020. We have adjusted our forecasts to reflect a full launch in the Mount Sinai system in FY’21 (June yearend) and have upgraded our valuation analysis through unwinding our risk adjustment from 60% to 65%. Our valuation analysis now implies an intrinsic value of 477p/share (previously 459p/share).