Optimer Pharmaceuticals Inc.
) first quarter 2013 net loss (excluding special items) of 65
cents per share was wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a
loss of 42 cents but narrower than the year-ago loss of 73 cents
per share. Lower-than-expected revenues were primarily
responsible for the wider-than-expected loss incurred by the
company in the first quarter of 2013.
Revenues in the first quarter of 2013 came in at $19.4
million, up 35.1% from the year-ago quarter. The increase was
primarily due to higher Dificid sales. Revenues, however, missed
the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $21 million.
Quarter in Details
Revenues in the reported quarter included Dificid sales in the
US and Canada along with contract revenue of $2.5 million under
the company's collaboration agreements with companies like
Astellas Pharma, Inc.
) and Specialized Therapeutics Australia, Pty. Ltd.
We remind investors that Dificid, Optimer's sole marketed
product, was launched in the US in Jul 2011 for treating patients
suffering from clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea (CDAD)
-- the most common form of nosocomial, or hospital acquired,
diarrhea. Dificid was launched in Canada in Jun 2012. Net sales
of the drug shot up 16.7% to $16.8 million in the reported
quarter. The increase was primarily attributable to higher demand
along with a 5.6% price increase which was effective from Jan
Dificid was approved in the EU under the trade name, Dificlir,
in Dec 2011. Last month the drug was also approved in Australia
for the treatment of confirmed clostridium difficile infection
(CDI) in adults. Dificid is expected to be launched in Australia
We note that Optimer has an exclusive two-year agreement
(through Jul 2013) with
) to co-promote Dificid in the US for the treatment of CDAD.
Co-promotion expenses amounted to $3.8 million during the first
quarter of 2013, compared with $10.1 million in the year-ago
Optimer is planning to expand Dificid's label. The company is
currently running a phase IIIb study evaluating the prophylactic
use of Dificid in patients undergoing bone marrow transplantation
or hematopoietic stem cell transplant. Optimer expects an interim
analysis on the study in the latter half of the year. Optimer is
also conducting a phase IIa study evaluating the pharmacokinetics
of Dificid in pediatrics.
Selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses during
the reported quarter were up 33.2% to $34 million. However,
research & development (R&D) expenses were down 10.7% to
$9.9 million during the period.
Optimer currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Meanwhile,
Cubist Pharma carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
ASTELLAS PHARMA (ALPMY): Get Free Report
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