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Qiagen's Q3 Revenues Climb 6 Percent

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Qiagen reported after the close of the market on Monday that revenues for the third quarter rose 6 percent year over year, with molecular diagnostics sales increasing 9 percent.

For the three months ended Sept. 30, the firm posted $274.3 million in sales, up from $259.7 million in the third quarter of 2009. Wall Street expected revenues of $276.5 million.

In a statement, CEO Peer Shatz said the company's molecular diagnostics business "continues to grow rapidly and gain share." Excluding the effects of H1N1 and at constant exchange rates, sales for the segment rose 18 percent year over year, which includes five percentage points attributed to acquisitions.

Adoption of Qiagen's prevention assays drove up sales in that business, which offset a "significant decline" in patient visits to doctors' offices in the US, the company said.

Applied testing increased 30 percent, or 20 percent including the effects of H1N1, and further growth is expected form the launch during the fourth quarter of the first series of blood tests following Qiagen's purchase of German food analysis laboratory Institute for Product Quality.

The firm's pharma sales grew 11 percent, or 9 percent including the effects of H1N1, while sales to academia climbed 5 percent, flat including the effects of H1N1.

Consumable sales grew 10 percent year over year, while instrument sales slid 5 percent, the company said.

Results for the third quarter include operations from acquisitions, including SABiosciences, which Qiagen acquired in December, and DxS, which was purchased in September 2009.

During the quarter, Qiagen launched its QIAsymphony RGQ, an automated modular testing platform for molecular diagnostics. The platform, it said, is the only modular system that covers entire laboratory workflows from initial sample preparation to the final result, and allows customers to run commercial assays and develop and conduct their own PCR-based assays.

The system has 10 assays targeted for the US. In October, Qiagen and Abbott announced a collaboration based on QIAsymphony RGQ covering HIV, human papillomavirus, and hepatits C.

Qiagen also said that it expects to submit an application for regulatory approval in the US for its therascreen KRAS assay, which determines gene mutation status in patients with metastatic colon cancer.

In total, Qiagen plans to make nine submissions to the US Food and Drug Administration during the next two years, starting in early 2011, Shatz said on a conference call following the release of the company's earnings.

For the third quarter, the company reported a 3 percent decline in profits to $36.5 million, or $0.15 per share, from $37.7 million a year ago, or $0.18 per share. On an adjusted basis, EPS was $0.25, compared to $0.26 a year ago, but above analyst estimates of $0.23.

Qiagen's R&D spending in the quarter rose to $31 million from $26.7 million a year ago, and SG&A costs rose to $93.4 million from $88.5 million.

As of Sept. 30, Qiagen had $807.8 million in cash and cash equivalents and $79.6 million in short-term investments.

Qiagen CFO Roland Sackers said that the firm expects to report fourth-quarter revenues of between $275 million to $290 million and adjusted EPS of between $0.24 and $0.25.

The company also reaffirmed its full-year guidance of $0.91 to $0.92 per share, based on foreign exchange rates as of Jan. 31, 2010. Net sales for full-year 2010 were lowered to a range of between $1.09 billion and $1.11 billion from an earlier guidance of $1.12 billion to $1.17 billion. The reduction reflects ongoing adverse effects of reduced patient visits in the US for HPV tests, the firm said.

In early Tuesday trade on the Nasdaq, shares of Qiagen were down around 1 percent at $18.65.

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