Moderna Inc MRNA incurred loss of 31 cents per share in the second quarter of 2020, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 36 cents and the year-ago loss of 41 cents.
Revenues in the quarter were $66.4 million, which comfortably beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $31.52 million. In the year-ago quarter, revenues were $13.1 million.
Despite encouraging results, Moderna’s shares were down 3.4% following the earnings release. Shares of Moderna have surged 287.5% so far this year compared with the industry’s 5.7% rise.
Quarter in Details
Collaboration revenues were $28.4 million, up 183.6% year over year. Grant revenues were $37.9 million compared with $3.1 million in the year-ago quarter. While Collaboration revenues were boosted primarily by a payment from Moderna’s partner, AstraZeneca AZN, Grant revenues were driven by its agreement with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (“BARDA”) related to the development of its coronavirus vaccine candidate, mRNA-1273.
The company has received a funding commitment of up to $955 million from BARDA to develop its coronavirus vaccine candidate.
General and administrative expenses were up 28.6% to $36.6 million, primarily attributable to increased headcount and mRNA-1273 vaccine candidate development-related activities. Research & development expenses increased 18.4% to $151.9 million, largely due to increased headcount and mRNA-1273’s clinical development.
The company ended the quarter with $3.07 billion in cash and cash equivalents, compared with $1.7 billion as of Mar 31, 2020.
As of Jul 31, the company received approximately $400 million of customer deposits for potential supply of its coronavirus vaccine.
Moderna has 23 mRNA investigational candidates with 13 candidates in clinical development stage. Its most advanced mRNA pipeline candidates include mRNA-1273, mRNA-1647, mRNA-4157 and AZD8601.
Currently, the company is focused on developing its mRNA-based vaccine candidate, mRNA-1273, for COVID-19. The company initiated a phase III study on the candidate last week. Enrollment is expected to be completed in September. The company has also initiated a phase II study on the candidate in May and has completed enrollment.
While mRNA-1647 and mRNA-4157 are being evaluated as vaccines for Cytomegalovirus and cancer, respectively, AZD8601 is a mRNA-based therapy candidate for myocardial ischemia. These candidates are in mid-stage development.
Data from a 12-month interim analysis of a phase I study evaluating mRNA-1647 showed durable neutralizing antibody responses. An interim data readout from the phase II study is expected in the third quarter of 2020.
A phase II study is evaluating mRNA-4157 in combination with Merck’s MRK Keytruda for the adjuvant treatment of high-risk resected melanoma. Moderna is evaluating AZD8601 in collaboration with AstraZeneca in a phase IIa study for patients with ischemic heart disease undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting surgery.
However, Moderna’s focus on developing its coronavirus vaccine has hampered the development of certain other pipeline candidates. The company has paused enrollment and new site initiation for two early-stage studies evaluating mRNA-3704 and mRNA-3927 in methylmalonic acidemia and propionic acidemia, respectively. The company is implementing changes which it believes will ultimately help to accelerate clinical development of these candidates. Meanwhile, the company restarted the phase I study on its chikungunya virus candidate, mRNA-194, that was halted due to COVID-19.
Moderna’s mRNA technology has helped it to enter into several collaborations with large pharma/biotech companies namely Merck, AstraZeneca and Vertex Pharmaceuticals VRTX.
Moderna, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
Currently, Moderna is a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
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