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Revenues Climb, Losses Grow at Celera for Q3

NEW YORK, April 25-Celera Genomics Group's revenues grew as net losses widened during the third quarter of 2002, the company said today.


The company reported revenues of $30.5 million for the quarter ended March 31, up from $23.5 million for the equivalent quarter in 2001.


The increase was primarily due to new database subscriptions, including two from industry subscribers and 50 from academia. Online business revenues climbed from $12.4 million in the third quarter last year to $18.5 million in the most recent quarter of this year, representing 61 percent of total sales.


Nevertheless, special charges related to Paracel expanded the company's quarterly losses from $29.1 million, or 48 cents per share, one year ago to $49.5 million, or 72 cents per share.


For the nine months ended March 31, 2002, Celera reported a net loss of $2.82 per share, including charges related to Paracel and the Axys acquisition. Total revenues for the period were $92.8 million, up from $62 million for the same period last year.


Because contract and grant sequencing have not contributed to Celera's profitability, said Applera CEO Tony White, the company will no longer seek these opportunities, services that formerly brought in about 40 percent of revenue. As a result, Celera halved its guidance for 2003, anticipating total revenues of between only $85 million and $95 million.


Celera will focus more tightly on therapeutics, and reduce cash expenditures as part of the corporate decision to shift its core business from selling sequences to developing drugs.


The company now forecasts net cash use between $110 million and $120 million for this fiscal year, down from the earlier projection of $155 million to $170 million.


Celera anticipates fourth quarter revenue between $27 million and $29 million


At Celera Diagnostics, the joint venture between Celera Genomics and Applied Biosystems, third quarter revenues were $2.7 million, up from $1.8 million in the equivalent quarter last year. The boost, said new Celera Genomics president Kathy Ordoñez, was mainly due to sales of the company's cystic fibrosis test.


In early May, Celera Diagnostics will begin its first major disease association study to probe more than 1,000 samples in order to find SNPs associated with Alzheimer's disease.


By the end of the year, said Ordoñez, the division plans to be "well along" with at least two other such studies.

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