NeoStem (NYSE MKT: NBS) Business Update
Since the announcement on June 18th of NeoStem’s definitive agreement to divest its majority holdings in Erye, its China pharmaceutical manufacturing segment, and focus on its CDMO and cell therapy product development businesses, NBS’ publicly traded Common Stock price has increased over 50% raising its market cap to $109M as of August 10, 2012.
NeoStem expects to receive $12.3M in cash to use towards US operations and further bolster its balance sheet by removing $35M in short- and long-term debt obligations through the divestiture of Erye. 50% of the cash price has now been received directly or is in escrow and closing is expected to occur over the next 6-10 weeks.
NeoStem has raised through warrant exercises and equity sales $17.6M year to date in 2012, and has efficiently managed its use of cash with net cash losses of $9.9M. To further cost savings and effectively service the US and Canadian markets with timely and responsive services, NBS closed its Boston, MA facility, and has consolidated these operations into its cellular therapy operations in Allendale, NJ (30,000 sq.’) and Mountain View, CA (25,000 sq.’).
Revenues from continuing operations grew 95% for the six months ended 6/30/12 compared to the prior year period. This growth is primarily due to the increased overall visibility of Progenitor Cell Therapy (“PCT”), PCT’s penetration into the cell therapy marketplace, and enhanced investment by NeoStem into the business.
NeoStem is continuing to enroll patients into the PreSERVE P2 clinical trial in the US for post AMI (acute myocardial infarction) patients and anticipates completing enrolment in 2013 with 6 months initial data readout near the end of 2013. Peak annual worldwide sales of AMR-001 for this indication are estimated to be over $1 billion based upon a conservative market penetration of the qualified target patient population.
NeoStem continues to strengthen its scientific, operations and business management teams, with the recent additions of Martin Schmieg, Vice President, Corporate Development, and Jonathan Sackner-Bernstein, MD, FACC, Vice President of Clinical Development and Regulatory Affairs.
Progress Report on Erye Divestiture
- NeoStem has received directly or into escrow $6.2M representing 50% of the total $12.3M cash purchase price. The divestiture of Erye will also return approximately 1,040,000 shares of NBS’ Common Stock and cancel 1,170,000 Common Stock options and 640,000 Common Stock warrants;
- Additionally, the divestiture will bolster NeoStem’s balance sheet by eliminating over $35M in short- and long-term debt obligations. The divestiture transaction is expected to close in the next 6-10 weeks, subject to the satisfaction of various closing conditions including China regulatory approvals, the submission of which is already underway;
- NBS’ second quarter results include Erye, its Pharmaceutical Manufacturing – China segment, in discontinued operations. Net loss from discontinued operations attributable to NeoStem common shareholder interests for the three and six months ended June 30, 2012 was $13.4M and $14.8M, respectively, or $0.10 and $0.12 per share, compared to $0.5M and $0.8M, or $0.01 and $0.01 per share for the three and six months ended June 30, 2011. The loss attributable to NeoStem common shareholders for the three and six months ended June 30, 2012 included NBS’ 51% share of a total $28M non-cash, asset impairment charge, based on the definitive agreement purchase price;
- The Erye divestiture allows the Company to hone its focus on its cell therapy clinical development programs and the PCT CDMO commercial business.
Results of Continued Operations for the Three Months and Six Months Ended June 30, 2012
- Continuing operations consist of the Company’s cellular therapy business in the United States.
- Revenues from continuing operations for the three and six months ended June 30, 2012 were $3.4M and $7.1M, respectively, compared to $2.2M and $3.7M for the same periods in 2011. The increase in revenue, representing a 95% revenue growth for the six months ended June 30, 2012 compared to the prior year period, was primarily driven by clinical service revenues in the Company’s PCT subsidiary, and reflected an increased overall visibility of PCT and penetration into the cell therapy marketplace, along with a general increase in the development of autologous cell therapies in the United States due to enhanced investment and expanded marketing programs in 2011 and 2012.
- PCT’s industry role is to be a problem solver (consultant), implementation expert and cGMP manufacturing service provider from product discovery to commercialization for product developers. In its 13 year history, PCT has supported over 100 regenerative medicine companies and NeoStem anticipates growth in the United States and abroad by expansion into Europe.
- Net loss from continuing operations attributable to NeoStem common shareholder interests for the three and six months ended June 30, 2012 was $7.2M and $15.2M, respectively, or $0.05 and $0.12 per share, compared to $10.1 million and $20.2 million, or $0.13 and $0.26 per share for the three and six months ended June 30, 2011. NBS’ loss from continuing operations for six months ended June 30, 2012, excluding non-cash charges, was $9.9 million (see reconciliation below).
NeoStem Current and Projected Financial Position
- As of June 30, 2012, NBS had cash and cash equivalents of $2.1M, and an additional $2.5M in cash held in escrow (classified in Other Assets). Since the close of the second quarter, NBS raised an additional $7 million through warrant exercises and private placements of restricted securities. In addition, NBS expects to receive a total of $12.3M from the sale of its ownership in Erye, providing additional forecasted cash inflows without further dilution in the second half of 2012.
AMR-001 Cardiovascular Product Pipeline
- NeoStem management believes that cell therapy is a disruptive technology in the $50 billion worldwide regenerative medicine market. NeoStem’s autologous adult stem cell therapy (AMR-001) is designed to prevent major cardiac events following acute myocardial infarction (AMI), or what is commonly referred to as a heart attack;
- NeoStem is currently conducting its PreSERVE P2 clinical trial in the US Many key opinion leaders in the scientific, medical and investment communities consider AMR-001 to be best in class. Company management anticipates completing P2 patient enrolment in 2013 with six months initial data readout near the end of 2013. Peak annual worldwide sales of AMR-001 for this indication could exceed $1B based upon a conservative market penetration of its qualified target patient population. AMR-001 is protected by two issued and multiple pending US patents with corresponding patent coverage in selected markets around the world;
- The Amorcyte AMR-001 product development program also extends to congestive heart failure (CHF). NBS is preparing to launch its CHF P1 clinical trials in early 2013. The worldwide CHF patient population is estimated to be 4x larger than that of AMI.
The opportunity for existing and new NeoStem shareholders is substantial. In the midst of global economic uncertainty, NeoStem has assembled a multifaceted business plan that can drive top revenue growth through its PCT CDMO business while investing in dynamic cell therapy development programs. The Company’s service business and pipeline of proprietary cell therapy products work synergistically, giving NeoStem a competitive advantage that is unique in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. Supported by an experienced scientific and business management team and a dynamic patent and patent pending intellectual property portfolio, NeoStem is well-positioned for future success. Company management will continue to seek business opportunities that will strengthen NBS and looks forward to achieving success for its investors with the goal of being a multibillion dollar biopharmaceutical company.