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Twist Bioscience Q2 Revenues Increase 42 Percent

NEW YORK – Twist Bioscience reported a 42 percent increase in second quarter revenues after the close of the market on Thursday.

For the quarter ended March 31, Twist reported total revenues of $19.3 million, up from $13.6 million during the prior-year period. It beat analysts' average revenue estimate of $18.3 million.

"In the midst of the global pandemic, we introduced our methylation product for next-generation sequencing (NGS) and expanded our product line for synbio as planned and on schedule while we concurrently leveraged our capabilities to write DNA at scale to introduce two products to help fight COVID-19," Twist CEO Emily Leproust said in a statement.  "We exceeded our revenue target for the quarter and orders continue to remain strong, even in these highly uncertain times."

Synthetic biology revenues, which include genes, libraries, and oligo pools, totaled $11 million. The company shipped 88,000 genes during the quarter and recognized $9.1 million in revenue from that product line. NGS revenues were $7.7 million, representing 58 percent growth year over year, while the firm's biopharma revenue was $600,000.

By region, revenue from Europe, the Middle East, and Africa was $6 million and Asia Pacific revenues were $900,000, driven by lower revenue from China. By end market, industrial chemicals represented $7.5 million in revenues, healthcare accounted for $5.8 million, and the academic market contributed $5.5 million.

On a conference call following the release of the results, Twist officials noted they had also signed a new biopharma collaboration with royalty and milestone payments. Leproust added that the firm remains on pace to announce five to 10 total collaborations by the end of fiscal year 2020.

The firm's research and development expenses for the quarter totaled $10.6 million, up 19 percent from $8.9 million in Q2 2019, reflecting increased investments in biopharma, data storage, and NGS product development.

Its SG&A expenses jumped 42 percent to $27.2 million from $19.1 million a year ago, attributable to additional commercial costs, mainly marketing.

Twist's net loss for the quarter was $31.8 million, or $.85 per share, compared to a net loss of $25.9 million, or $.93 per share, in the prior-year period. Twist's EPS missed analysts' average estimate of a $.75 loss per share.

Twist noted that it completed an offering of approximately 5.3 million shares of its common stock at a price of $28.00 per share, as well as an at-the-market offering, raising a combined total of approximately $190 million during Q2.

Twist used approximately 37.2 million shares to calculate its per-share loss in the recently completed quarter compared to about 27.9 million shares a year ago.

The company ended the quarter with $184.4 million in cash and cash equivalents, and short-term investments of $45.7 million.

Twist withdrew its financial guidance for fiscal year 2020, due to "the unprecedented and uncertain environment," it said. However, the firm "remains open for business and we continue to execute," Leproust added.

APAC revenues bounced back strongly at the end for March, and while 25 percent of the firm's revenues come from academic customers, which have been affected by shelter-in-place orders in the US and Europe, CFO Jim Thorburn said the end of that month was "very strong" for that market and the firm has "a lot of interesting programs in the pipeline," especially those related to COVID-19.

In morning trading on the Nasdaq, shares of Twist's stock were up 5 percent at $38.38.

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