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Twist Bioscience Fiscal Q4 Revenues Increase 87 Percent

NEW YORK – Twist Bioscience reported after the close of the market on Wednesday that revenues for its fiscal fourth quarter 2019 rose 87 percent year over year.

For the three months ended Sept. 30, 2019, the firm reported revenues of $15.7 million compared to $8.4 million in the year-ago period. It beat analysts' average revenue estimate of $14.1 million.

"Throughout fiscal 2019, we continued to drive significant revenue growth across geographies, diversifying sales across customers and our synthetic biology and next-generation sequencing product lines," Twist CEO and Cofounder Emily Leproust said in a statement. "We expanded our synbio product line with the addition of longer genes and an integrated API, broadened our NGS workflow with several product line extensions including Fast Hybridization, Mouse Exome, and the Mitochondrial Panel, and completed our first collaborations for biopharma with Pandion and continue our work with LakePharma."

On a conference call following the release of the results, Leproust noted that the firm shipped 81,000 genes in the quarter, up from 71,000 genes in the prior-year period.

Twist CFO Jim Thorburn said fiscal Q4 revenues from synbio were $9.6 million. Revenue from Ginkgo Bioworks was $2.1 million, down from $3.2 million in the prior-year period, "due to timing of Ginkgo projects," he said. Non-Ginkgo synbio revenues were $7.5 million, up from $5.8 million a year ago, and NGS revenues were $6.1 million.

The company's net loss in fiscal Q4 2019 was $31.2 million, or $.96 per share, compared to $19.8 million, or $6.59 per share, in fiscal Q4 2018. Analysts had estimated a net loss per share of $.83.

Twist's R&D expenses were $10.5 million in the quarter, up 72 percent from $6.1 million in fiscal Q4 2018. SG&A expenses grew 88 percent to $24.4 million from $13 million.

Revenues for fiscal year 2019 were $54.4 million, a 114 percent increase from $25.4 million in fiscal year 2018.

Total synbio revenues were $33.3 million, up from $22.8 million in 2018. Ginkgo revenues alone were $9.2 million, up from $8.7 million in 2018. Non-Ginkgo synbio revenues grew to $24 million from $14 million in 2018, driven by growth in genes and oligo pools products. NGS revenues grew sevenfold to $21 million, up from $2.7 million in 2018.

Revenues from the US were $37 million, and revenues from Europe, the Middle East, and Africa were nearly $15 million, up from $6.6 million. Asia Pacific revenues were nearly $3 million, with "just under $2 million from China," Thorburn said.

By end market, revenues from industrial biotech were approximately $22 million. Healthcare grew to become the firm's second largest segment, with revenues of $17.4 million, driven by NGS and genes.

Leproust said the firm shipped 288,000 genes in fiscal year 2019, "all of which are unique sequences," and delivered 8 billion bases.

Net loss for the year was $107.7 million, or $3.92 per share, compared to $71.2 million, or $25.51 per share, in fiscal year 2018.

Twist's fiscal year 2019 R&D expenses were $35.7 million, up 76 percent from $20.3 million a year ago. Full year SG&A expenses were $80.1 million, up 84 percent from $43.5 million in fiscal 2018, driven by increased investment in the commercial organization, increased costs associated with being a public company, and higher legal fees.

As of Sept. 30, 2019, the company had $138.1 million in cash, cash equivalents, and short-term investments.

For the 2020 fiscal year, Twist anticipates total revenues between $80 million and $84 million and a net loss in the range of $103 million to $106 million due to increased investments in it commercial organization, R&D, and legal expenses related to the Agilent litigation, which is scheduled to go to trial on Feb. 24, 2020.

For Q1 of fiscal year 2020, the firm expects revenues ranging from $15 million to $16.5 million and a net loss between $31 million and $32 million.