Astex Pharmaceuticals Has a Catalyst-Driven Year Ahead (Part III)
Meaningful catalysts anticipated this year include:
1. On April 6, the company will present updates to the Phase I data set for SGI-110 in MDS/AML.
2. Following, Astex will present more mature data at the meeting of the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) at the end of May.
3. Analysts have opined that a preliminary Phase II read-out could occur at ESMO in September.
4. The company has said definitively that preliminary data from the Phase II MDS/AML trial will be presented at the ASH meeting this December.
Further, investors can expect final results from the Phase II study of AT-13387 in combination w/Gleevec in patients with advanced GIST in the second half of the year.
Backdrop Support from Royalties and a Strong Balance Sheet
Astex collects impressive royalties on Dacogen sales, up to 30% worldwide. In 2012, the company reported $71.1M in royalty revenue, which in fact generated a net income of $8.2M, or $0.08 per diluted share. Considering that most drug developers incur substantial losses as the pipeline develops, seeing EPS generation from Astex is highly encouraging, and whether the company can continue producing profit or not, Dacogen royalties will be used to partially offset operating expenses, primarily R&D. The company is guiding for $55M in revenue for 2013, and with ongoing operating costs, the company expects a net loss of $30M this year. Astex ended the year with $138.3M in cash and equivalents, meaning the company has plenty of resources to get to critical milestones without further diluting investors.