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Curetis Posts 41 Percent Increase in Q1 Revenues

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Curetis today reported a 41 percent year-over-year increase in its first quarter revenues, thanks largely to surging sales of its diagnostic test cartridges and instruments in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia (EMEA).

For the three-month period ended March 31, Curetis' revenues climbed to €490,000 ($577,490) from €347,000 a year earlier. Contributing to the growth was a 518 percent bounce in sales of the firm's Unyvero molecular diagnostic instrument and related cartridges in EMEA direct selling markets.

Curetis said it ended the first quarter with 167 Unyvero instruments placed worldwide, down from 175 at the end of 2017 due to the company's buyback of multiple analyzers from a pharmaceutical partner upon completion of a Phase III clinical trial in which the instruments were used.

Following the recent US approval and commercial launch of the the Unyvero system and a multiplex lower respiratory tract infection test, and with continued uptake of the system in non-US territories, Curetis expects to have 250 to 300 systems installed by the end of 2018. Of that total, 40 to 50 are expected to be placed in the US by year-end, but the firm said it does not expect any material impact on revenues from US placements before the end of the year.

"It is exciting to enter the US market with a first-in-class product with no direct competition in the US," Curetis CEO Oliver Schacht said in a statement. "We expect to continue executing on our commercial conversion campaign, expand our commercial distribution partner network, and launch new and updated Unyvero applications."

Curetis recently began a second clinical study of an invasive joint infection cartridge — a US-specific variation of its implant and tissue infection cartridge — and has provided a pre-submission package for the test to the US Food and Drug Administration. It also said it is on track to obtain CE-IVD marking for a new analyzer — the Unyvero A30 RQ — in 2019.

Curetis' Q1 net loss widened to €5.8 million, or €.37 per share, from €4.4 million, or €.28 per share, in the year-ago period.

R&D spending in the quarter was up 47 percent to €2.2 million from €1.5 million a year earlier, while administrative costs rose 29 percent to €1.1 million from €854,000 year over year.

At the end of March, Curetis had cash and cash equivalents totaling €11.4 million.

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