Markets

Akers Receives Order for Rapid Assays in China; Shares Rise

Shares of Akers Biosciences Inc.AKER rallied 11.2% (19 cents) on Mar 2, following the announcement of an order to supply PIFA Heparin PF4/Rapid Assay products in China. The tests were notably approved by the Chinese FDA (CFDA) in November last year.

The order received from Akers' Chinese distributor NovoTek Therapeutics is valued at approximately $2.5 million and will be supplied in portions throughout 2016. Sales are expected to start before the end of the first quarter of 2016. Notably, NovoTek possesses exclusive sales and marketing rights for PIFA Heparin/PF4 Rapid Assay products in China.

These tests are essentially for HIT, which is a lethal allergy caused by commonly used blood thinning drug - Heparin. The allergies undo the effect of Heparin, changing into a clotting agent, which is particularly hazardous for patients undergoing major cardiac, orthopaedic or other surgeries.

Notably, these tests are the only ones approved by a regulatory body in China. Hence we believe that the recent development will help Akers gain significant penetration in the region. Additionally, the demand for these tests in the Chinese market is also on the rise. In fact, out of an estimated 12 million patients who are prescribed Heparin, 1%-5% develops HIT.

We believe the PIFA Heparin PF4/Rapid Assay products are key growth catalysts for the company. Notably, the rapid assay test is the only approved one in the U.S. as well. Hence it obliterates the scope for competition and improves top-line growth for Akers.

As of Sep 30, 2015, the rapid assay products have been adopted by 200 U.S. hospitals, with an impressive growth rate of 20 new hospitals per month. Management is optimistic that total hospital count will rise to 500 by Dec 31, 2016.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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