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Meridian Bioscience Fiscal Q3 Revenues Grow 2 Percent

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Meridian Bioscience said today that its fiscal third quarter revenues increased 2 percent year over year on strong sales in its Diagnostics unit.

For the third quarter ended June 30, Cincinnati, Ohio-based Meridian posted net revenues of $48.2 million compared to $47.2 million in the year ago quarter and falling shy of analysts' consensus estimate of $48.6 million. Excluding a negative foreign currency effect of approximately $1.5 million, revenues grew 5 percent, Meridian said.

Meridian's Diagnostics segment grew 2 percent to $36.0 million from $35.2 million, lifted by a 10 percent increase in revenues from the illumigene molecular product line. Meridian noted that its illumigene customer base grew by 25 labs in the quarter for a total of 1,427 customers, of which 35 percent are multiple assay accounts.

Highlights in the quarter included the recent US Food and Drug Administration clearance of the illumigene HSV 1&2 assays for the detection of herpes simplex virus 1 and 2 from cutaneous and mucocutaneous samples.

Elsewhere in Diagnostics, Helicobacter pylori testing products grew by 8 percent, foodborne testing declined slightly, and immunoassay respiratory products increased by double digits over the prior year quarter.

Meridian's Life Science segment, meantime, grew 1 percent year over year to $12.2 million from $12.0 million. Within Life Science, the core business grew 7 percent, offset by a 7 percent decline in the London-based Bioline business, primarily due to foreign currency headwinds. On a constant currency basis, Bioline revenue grew 2 percent year over year, Meridian said. Highlights in the quarter included continued strong sales in China and multiple new product launches in the area of RNA research applications, particularly the isolation and use of microRNA.

In fiscal Q3, Meridian's R&D expenses inched up to $3.2 million from $3.1 million, while its SG&A expenses fell slightly to $12.7 million from $13.0 million.

Meridian logged a profit of $9.1 million, or $.22 per share, in fiscal Q3 compared to $8.8 million, or $.21 per share, in the year-ago period. Meridian's EPS was in line with the Wall St. estimate.

The company finished the quarter with $46 million in cash and cash equivalents.

Reaffirming previous guidance, for the full year ending Sept. 30, Meridian expects net revenues to be in the range of $193 million to $200 million and EPS of between $.85 and $.91.

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