) second quarter 2012 net loss (excluding special items) of 1 cent
per share was narrower than the year-ago loss of 52 cents and the
Zacks Consensus loss Estimate of 6 cents per share. Higher revenues
resulted in a narrower loss in the second quarter of 2012.
Revenues in the second quarter of 2012 came in at $49.8 million
as opposed to $0.3 million in the year-ago quarter. Revenue as per
the Zacks Consensus Estimate was $44 million. We note that revenues
in the reported quarter included a $19.9 million upfront payment
from the Japanese unit of partner Astellas Pharma and a $12.6
million milestone payment from Astellas Pharma Europe on Dificlir
(Dificid in the US) sales.
Second Quarter Details
We remind investors that Dificid, Optimer's sole marketed
product, was launched in the US in July 2011 for treating patients
suffering from clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea (CDAD) -
the most common form of nosocomial, or hospital acquired, diarrhea.
Net sales of the drug came in at $15.2 million in the second
quarter of 2012, up 5.9% sequentially. Dificid was launched in
Canada in June this year.
Dificid was approved in the European Union (EU) under the trade
name, Dificlir, in December 2011. Dificlir is currently available
in the UK, Austria, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway, the
Netherlands and Portugal.
We note that Optimer has an exclusive two-year agreement
(through July 2013) with
) to co-promote Dificid in the US for the treatment of CDAD.
Co-promotional expenses amounted to $5.0 million during the second
Optimer is planning to expand Dificid's label. The company
expects to initiate a clinical trial evaluating the prophylactic
use of Dificid in patients undergoing bone marrow transplant (BMT)
by year-end. Optimer will be initiating another study on Dificid in
CDAD patients, experiencing multiple recurrences, in the second
half of 2013.
Both selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses (up
95.5%) and research & development (R&D) expenses (up 12.3%)
shot up during the reported quarter. The massive increase in
SG&A expenses was primarily attributable to the costs incurred
by Optimer for the commercialization and marketing of Dificid. The
increase in R&D expenses was attributable to higher health
economics along with outcomes research costs.
Currently, we have a Neutral stance on Optimer in the long run.
The company carries a Zacks #3 Rank ("Hold" rating) in the short
run. We are pleased with the company's effort to expand Dificid's
market globally. We remain concern about Optimer's dependence on a
single product for growth.
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