Qorvo, Inc . QRVO subsidiary, Qorvo Biotechnologies, LLC and Zomedica Pharmaceuticals Corp. ZOM recently inked a deal to improve the veterinary health domain with Bulk Acoustic Wave ("BAW") based filter technology.
Qorvo's piezo-electric BAW sensors will be leveraged by Zomedica in developing a diagnostic platform, primarily to detect hypothyroidism and Cushing's disease in dogs, and hyperthyroidism in cats.
Per the terms of the 10-year deal, Qorvo will develop and authenticate the assays, instruments and cartridges by leveraging its in-house developeddiagnostic tools and assay cartridges as required .Zomedica will market the assays, and related devices.
In the words of chairman and chief executive officer at Zomedica, Gerald Solensky, Jr., "We believe Qorvo's patented diagnostic technology has the potential to significantly expand the capability of our point-of-care diagnostic portfolio to deliver reference lab precision to the veterinary clinic on a cost-effective basis."
The diagnostic platform, named ZM-024 (in Zomedica's pipeline), is designed to offer fluorescence-free and non-optical detection system. Qorvo has carried out the required tests on its BAW. Zomedica is optimistic regarding ZM-024 prospects in other veterinary diagnostic domains, comprising multiplexing capabilities and molecular diagnostics.
Per the deal, Zomedica will pay Qorvo $1 million in cash and to $3.9 million in equity within 14 business days of execution of the deal. The additional milestone payments may amount to the range of $10-$10.9 million depending on the conclusion of deal in cash or equity.
The companies note that the investigational device, ZM-024 is limited to investigational purposes, and not available for sale, immediately.
What the Investors Need to Know?
Per Markets and Markets research firm, the immunodiagnostics market is projected to reach $4 billion by 2023 at a CAGR of 8.8%. Such growth prospects for this market are likely to enhance the prospects of the new product, anticipated to be available in fourth quarter of 2019.
With a broad product portfolio, Qorvo is well poised to diversify end-markets beyond mobile devices to healthcare, network infrastructure and aerospace/defense domains, as well.
Per ResearchandMarkets data, BAW sensors market is envisioned to reach $811.4 million by 2023, at a CAGR of approximately 12.1%, from 2018 to 2023. The market was valued at $407.9 million in 2017.
Qorvo is benefiting from increased demand in the performance-tier for RF Fusion based solutions, antenna tuning, discrete components and BAW-based multiplexers. Strength in Qorvo's solutions in defense (advanced radars and other electronic warfare products) and connectivity (Wi-Fi and emerging IoT applications) bode well. Rapid adoption of GaN for high-power applications deserves a special mention.
Qorvo, Inc. Price and Consensus
However, Qorvo operates in a competitive landscape that is becoming increasingly complex with low barriers to entry, exerting pricing pressure and reducing margins.
Further, customer concentration due to significant exposure to the likes of Apple AAPL and Huawei, among others is a headwind. We also note that due to the significant exposure, Qorvo's share price movement heavily dependent on Apple's results, which doesn't bode well.
Moreover, slight changes in demand of iPhone related devices create a stir among Apple's supplier base, which includes Qorvo. To add to the woes, Apple's vertical integration policy is also a major concern. Notably, the company recently lowered third-quarter guidance citing reduced demand for flagship smartphones.
Zacks Rank & A Key Pick
Qorvo carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Intel INTC is a stock worth considering in the broader Computer & Technology sector as it flaunts a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .
Expected long-term earnings growth rate for Intel is currently pegged at 8.4%.
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