Bristol Myers Deal Overshadows Q4 loss at Five Prime

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Five Prime Therapeutics, Inc. (FPRX) has been in the news over the past few days. Investors at Five Prime, which went public in September last year, had plenty to cheer when the company inked a $350 million deal with Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (BMY) earlier in the month. Five Prime Therapeutics saw it shares soar 22.6% on its agreement with the biopharma major for the discovery, development and commercialization of immuno-oncology treatments, a hot therapeutic area.

Amidst the excitement about the deal, Five Prime reported its fourth quarter 2013 results. The company reported a quarterly loss of 43 cents per share, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 60 cents. The company reported a loss of $5.59 per share a year ago. Higher revenues and an increased share count were primarily responsible for the narrower loss.

Revenues at Five Prime climbed 29% to $3.8 million. Revenues were boosted due to the company’s Mar 2013 agreement with UCB (UCBJF) targeting the areas of fibrosis-related inflammatory diseases and central nervous system disorders. Revenues beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2 million.

Research and development (R&D) expenses climbed 8% to $8.1 million due to the company’s efforts to develop its pipeline. Selling, general and administrative costs increased to $3 million from $2.3 million a year ago. The company projects net cash used in operating activities below $30 million in 2014.

Five Prime carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Alexion Pharmaceuticals (ALXN) is an example of a better-ranked stock with a Zacks Rank #1(Strong Buy).

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