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Celera's Q1 Revenues Fall 31 Percent on BHL Sales Decline

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Celera reported after the close of the market Wednesday that its first-quarter revenues tumbled 31 percent, largely due to a steep dip in the company's lab services and corporate revenues.

The Alameda, Calif.-based molecular diagnostics firm brought in total revenues of $31.4 million for the three-month period ended March 27, 2010, down from revenues of $45.7 million for the year-ago first quarter. Its revenues were in line with analysts' consensus estimate for the quarter.

Celera's lab services revenue, which is derived from its Berkeley HeartLab business, fell 39 percent from $28.5 million to $17.5 million year over year. That business was adversely affected by the loss of business from accounts serviced by former BHL sales representatives, who left the firm to work for a competitor.

Last week, Celera announced that it had reached a settlement agreement with Health Diagnostic Laboratory and the former BHL employees stemming from a suit Celera filed against them. Under the settlement, Celera will receive at least $7 million.

Celera's products revenue dipped five percent to $9.9 million from $10.4 million, while its corporate revenue was off 41 percent, falling to $4 million from $6.8 million.

The firm's net loss for the quarter was $12.5 million, or $.15 per share, compared to a net loss of $1.4 million, or $.01 per share for the first quarter of 2009. On a non-GAAP basis, Celera's loss per share was $.12, missing analysts' consensus estimate of $.11.

Celera's R&D spending for the quarter declined 14 percent to $6.6 million from $7.7 million, while its SG&A expenses fell 6 percent to $23.7 million from $25.3 million. Its SG&A spending fell primarily due to an allowance for doubtful accounts and savings from its 2009 restructuring, which were offset by an increase in legal expenses.

Celera expects total revenues for 2010 to be between $145 million and $155 million, and it anticipates a net loss of between $12 million, or $.15 per share, and $17 million, or $.21 per share, on a non-GAAP basis.

"Despite challenging conditions, revenues and the non-GAAP loss both came within our expectations for the first quarter," Celera CEO Kathy Ordonez said in a statement.

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