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Talis Biomedical Cutting Workforce by 35 Percent

NEW YORK – Talis Biomedical reported after the close of the market on Tuesday that it is reducing its workforce by 35 percent and implementing other cost-saving measures.

The firm also said it has stopped commercializing its COVID-19 assay to refocus on "large and long-term market opportunities in the women's and sexual health spaces," while it reported a nearly fivefold increase in revenues for its second quarter.

The Redwood City, California-based company said that based on the timing of notifications filed under California regulations, it expects to realize benefits from its restructuring plan in the fourth quarter of this year. The actions will lower its cash burn rate while extending its operations "further into 2025," it said.

The restructuring comes as Talis has sought to find its footing since going public in February 2021 as its share price has tumbled from $16 at its initial public offering to about $.77 at the close of the market on Tuesday.

At the same time, the firm has had to delay the beta rollout of its Talis One diagnostic system. Talis still has not said when it will launch the platform, but in a statement on Tuesday, CEO Rob Kelley noted, "We have an innovative, high-performing platform with Talis One, evidence that we can manufacture cartridges and instruments at scale and $165 million in cash to execute on our strategy."

"We plan to leverage these assets in markets where we believe we can deliver high-value, sustainable growth for a differentiated diagnostic platform at the point of care," he added.

To that end, Talis said that due to "evolving market dynamics with COVID testing and the current financial environment," it has stopped investing in the commercialization of its COVID-19 assay, which received Emergency Use Authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration in late 2021, but as of March still had not launched due to manufacturing issues and invalid rates greater than 10 percent.

The company said on Tuesday it now will refocus on opportunities in the women's and sexual health spaces, initially with a multiplex panel being developed for Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae.

The company also announced on Tuesday that its second quarter revenues increased to $572,000 from $117,000 a year ago and narrowed its net loss to $27.0 million in Q2 2022 from $64.5 million in Q2 2021. It had cash and cash equivalents of $165.4 million as of June 30.

In early morning trading on Wednesday on the Nasdaq, Talis' shares were up a fraction of 1 percent at $.77.