Pacific Edge misses earnings target

00:20, May 28 2012

Pacific Edge's push to commercialise its Cxbladder cancer diagnostic tool in multiple regions has seen the Kiwi biotech firm miss its full year earnings guidance by just over 10 per cent.

The company on Friday reported a net loss of $4.1 million for the year ending March 31.

That's wider than the $3.7m loss forecast, and the $3.1m net loss seen in the previous financial year.

This was largely due to costs associated with its bid to launch Cxbladder in North America through Pacific Edge Diagnostics USA, according a statement from chief executive David Darling and chairman Chris Swann.

Pacific Edge expects to complete construction on its Pennsylvania lab in September this year, with commercial operations scheduled to start in March following sign-off from US regulators.

''The company hopes to be able to be in a position to achieve a throughput target for the US laboratory by the end of the fifth year of trading which would give the company the potential to generate gross revenue in excess of $100m at that time,'' Darling and Swann said.

The company also noted that Cxbladder continued to gain ground in other regions during the year, with licensed partnership agreements signed in Australia and Spain, as well as new licenses in New Zealand.

These agreements provided a small boost to the income statement, with operating revenues of $645,000 in the year, up from $305,000 previously. However much of that rise was due to interest revenues, with interest returns of $342,000 from its cash holdings.
In September the company raised $20m through an entitlement share placement to fund its expansion. Cash holding stood at $17.9m as at the record date.

Pacific Edge shares rose 5.9 per cent to 18c today, and have dropped about 40 per cent over the past 12 months.