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BTIG Initiates Coverage of Akoya Biosciences With Buy Rating

NEW YORK – Investment bank BTIG on Wednesday initiated coverage of spatial biology company Akoya Biosciences with a Buy rating and a price target of $16 per share.

Akoya “leverages a first mover advantage in an underpenetrated market" as its spatial biology platform “helps functionally characterize novel proteins and understand biomarkers in the broader context of their tissue,” BTIG analysts Mark Massaro and ​​Vivian (Vidyun) Bais wrote in a research note.

Currently Akoya offers three main instrument platforms: PhenoCycler, Pheno-Imager HT, and PhenoCycler-Fusion. The company also sells reagents, software, and services. According to the report, Akoya expects the majority of its revenue will be driven by the bundled PhenoCycler-Fusion unit and the Pheno-Imager HT.

At the Advances in Genome Biology & Technology (AGBT) annual meeting this year, the company also unveiled its new RNA chemistry for the PhenoCycler-Fusion platform.

The analysts sized the total addressable market for spatial biology at an estimated $14 billion, including translational and clinical research. They believe that with less than 1 percent penetrated in terms of revenue opportunity, Akoya has a “significant opportunity ahead” to grow.

Additionally, the analysts said that their proprietary interviews confirm that spatial biology is “the real deal” and that Akoya is well positioned. According to them, Akoya leverages an instrument installed base of 748 systems with key customers spanning clinical labs, biopharma, and contract research organizations, giving the company a “strong business model.”

Akoya went public in April 2021. In morning trading on the Nasdaq, the firm’s shares were up 5 percent to $9.70.